David McCallum, the beloved NCIS star, has passed away at the age of 90.
This British actor portrayed the role of Chief Medical Examiner Donald 'Ducky' Mallard in the enduring police drama, a role he embraced since the show's inception in 2003. He held the distinction of being the last original cast member in the TV series.
Notably, McCallum also graced our screens in the 1960s spy series, The Man From U.N.C.L.E.
Sadly, on September 25, McCallum bid farewell at New York Presbyterian Hospital. He departed from this world due to natural causes, surrounded by his loving family during his final moments.
In a heartfelt statement from NCIS executive producers Steven D. Binder and David North, they paid their respects to the veteran star.
"For over twenty years, David McCallum endeared himself to audiences around the world playing the wise, quirky, and sometimes enigmatic, Dr Donald 'Ducky' Mallard," they said.
"But as much as his fans may have loved him, those who worked side by side with David loved him that much more."
"He was a scholar and a gentleman, always gracious, a consummate professional, and never one to pass up a joke."
"From day one, it was an honour to work with him and he never let us down. He was, quite simply, a legend. He was also family and will be deeply missed."
At the same time, both NBC and CBS have honored McCallum, acknowledging him as a 'gifted actor and author.'
"He led an incredible life, and his legacy will forever live on through his family and the countless hours on film and television that will never go away," the statement says.
McCallum leaves behind a loving family, including his wife of 56 years, Katherine McCallum, his sons Paul, Valentine, and Peter, his daughter Sophie, and eight cherished grandchildren: Julia, Luca, Iain, Stella, Gavin, George, Alessandro, and Whit.
Born in Glasgow in 1933, this accomplished actor's journey began when he was conscripted for National Service upon leaving school. He served in West Africa, rising to the rank of lieutenant.
After his military service, McCallum pursued his passion for acting at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London, where he shared classrooms with none other than Joan Collins. His career took flight with roles in notable films such as The Greatest Story Ever Told, Mosquito Squadron, Billy Budd, Freud, and A Night to Remember before his iconic role in NCIS.
As NCIS celebrates its 20th season this year, a special 20th-anniversary marathon is planned, featuring an 'In Memoriam' tribute to McCallum.
Beyond his acting talents, McCallum was a gifted musician, having recorded four albums for Capitol Records.
Devoted fans of NCIS have taken to social media to express their gratitude and remember the actor who brought 'Ducky' to life.
One fan shared: "Farewell, the absolute legend that was David McCallum. Was there ever a cooler Glaswegian?"
Another expressed: "I'm gutted. Another amazing actor is gone. Ducky was one of my favorite characters in NCIS! Rest in peace, David McCallum."
Someone else writes: "Very sad to hear this. I'm a big fan of NCIS and he was so much fun to watch. Condolences to all who knew and loved him."
"Very sad. He once said he was very lucky to have had two such prominent roles which made him known to different generations," a fourth commenter pens.