William Shatner has turned his Twitter account into a memorial site for his late friend and colleague Leonard Nimoy after explaining to fans he won’t be able to make it to his friend and Star Trek‘s co-star funeral in Los Angeles.
Shatner was forced to miss Nimoy’s funeral on Sunday due to a prior charity gala commitment in Florida, and told fans he would not have enough time to fly across the U.S. to make the memorial.
He took to Twitter.com to express his disappointment on Saturday, writing, “I feel really awful. Here I am doing charity work and one of my dearest friends is being buried.”
I feel really awful. Here I am doing charity work and one of my dearest friends is being buried.
— William Shatner (@WilliamShatner) February 28, 2015
The tweet sparked outrage among some followers, who felt Shatner should have abandoned the gala in favor of his friend’s funeral, prompting the actor to explain his decision.
When one fan wrote, “I can’t imagine Shatner not moving heaven & earth to get to Nimoy’s funeral”, he responded, “I chose to honor a commitment I made months ago to appear at a charitable fundraiser. A lot of money was raised. So here I am; tell me off.”
Editors of The New York Daily News even labeled Shatner as “Captain Jerk” on the front page of its Sunday issue, and the actor reposted the link on his Twitter page, noting, “You know what I find puzzling. The headline is horrible but the article contradicts it,” since the piece was titled, “William Shatner reveals he will miss Leonard Nimoy’s funeral: ‘I feel really awful'”.
— William Shatner (@WilliamShatner) March 1, 2015
Shatner also took aim at radio host Todd Schnitt, who blasted Shatner for skipping the event, adding, “I must have missed your email about underwriting the arrangement and payment for this (charity event)… So has Mr. Moneybags @toddschnitt made his donation yet to the @RedCross? A jet from FL to LA is about $30K in the name of #LeonardNimoy pls (please).”
The actor added, “One of the other misconceptions seems to be that folks think flights to LAX (airport) occur all night long.”
Shatner spent much of the rest of the weekend memorializing Nimoy on Twitter and answering followers’ questions about what it was like working with Leonard Nimoy, who passed away on Friday, aged 83.
"I loved him like a brother. We will all miss his humor, his talent, and his capacity to love." -William Shatner http://t.co/U8ZN98tVYp
— William Shatner (@WilliamShatner) February 27, 2015
Following the question and answer session, Shatner wrote, “I do want to thank everyone for coming here and sharing their memories and celebrating the life of #LeonardNimoy LLAP (Live long and prosper)!”
Although Shatner missed the funeral in Los Angeles, he pointed out that his two daughters attended the memorial for Nimoy, whom Shatner noted was “an amazing uncle” to his kids.
Photo Credit: Mike Stotts/ WENN