James Doohan would have been 101 today (March 3), and though he was an author, a soldier, and a voice actor, he will always be remembered as Montgomery “Scotty” Scott from the original Star Trek series and the additional six movies. He also made an appearance on Star Trek: The Next Generation as well. And though even writers from this site don’t agree that he was the best engineer in Star Trek, many, many fans would disagree. But one thing everyone agrees upon is the humor and gravitas Doohan brought to the series.
"“She’s supposed to have transwarp.” — Sulu, “Aye. And if my grandmother had wheels, she’d be a wagon.” — Scotty, Star Trek III: The Search For Spock"
Always known for a quick comeback, Scotty stood his ground in times of trouble and always came through in the end, much like Doohan himself who joined the Royal Canadian Artillery at the beginning of the Second World War. A lieutenant in the 14th Field Artillery Regiment of the 3rd Canadian Infantry, Doohan saw the combat landing at Juno Beach on D-Day and was hit by machine gun fire. Four bullets went in his leg, one in the chest, and one through his right middle finger which had to be amputated, something he concealed onscreen during his time as an actor.
But much like his character on Star Trek: The Original Series, Doohan didn’t always toe the company line. He was reprimanded after he “slalomed a plane between telegraph poles just to prove it could be done.”
He appeared at Star Trek conventions frequently, earned a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and an honorary degree in engineering from the Milwaukee School of Engineering, and inspired countless students to become engineers. He left behind a legacy as a soldier, an actor, and an inspiration to many. Just a few of the reasons why James Doohan will never be forgotten.