The Shepherd’s Journey Has Ended: Ron Glass dead at 71

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“So, how come you don’t care where you are going?”

“Cause how you get there is the worthier part.”

Ron Glass may have been known for his Emmy-nominated role on Barney Miller, but it was his character Shepherd Derrial Book on the fan favorite series Firefly where he won the hearts among sci-fi/fantasy audiences. He passed away Friday at the age of 71.

His agent Jeffery Leavitt released this statement:

It is with a very heavy heart that I confirm the passing of my dear friend and client Ron Glass, Ron passed late last night of respiratory failure. Ron was a private, gentle and caring man. He was an absolute delight to watch on screen. Words cannot adequately express my sorrow.

His fellow cast mates from the series took to social media to express their grief.

Firefly creator Joss Whedon posted a clip on Twitter, calling Glass “my Shepherd” and encouraged fans to donate to the Wooten Center, a youth program Glass worked with for over 20 years.

Jewel Staite, who was in the scene with Glass as Kaylee, posted to Instagram a picture from the set, saying he was someone who remembered details and ask about family, always hugging and laughing till he cried.

Nathan Fillion, who played Capt. Mal Reynolds, posted to Instagram the quote from the final scene he shared with Glass in the movie, Serenity.

"Shepard, don't move." "Won't go far." We love you, Ron Glass. Don't go far.

A post shared by Nathan Fillion (@nathanfillion) on

Alan Tudyk also took to Twitter, and was retweeted by Morena Baccarin, also commenting on his laugh.

Adam Baldwin, who portrayed Jayne, also posted a clip wishing Glass a happy rebirth.

Glass was born in Evansville, Indiana and studied drama and literature at University of Evansville. He had roles in the early 70’s on hit shows like Sanford and Son, Hawaii Five-O, and All in the Family. However, it was not until his 1975 portrayal of the dapper and intellectual Detective Ron Harris on Barney Miller that he hit it big. He received an Emmy nominations for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy or Variety or Music Series in 1982 but lost to Christopher Lloyd for Taxi.

Later, Glass made appearances on The New Odd Couple as well as The Twilight Zone, Family Matters, and Murder, She Wrote.

One of his last roles Glass worked on after the Firefly 2005 movie, Serenity, was as Dr. Streiten on Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, a show Whedon co-created.

 

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