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Scott Bakula issued a tribute to his former Quantum Leap co-star Dean Stockwell, who died Sunday at the age of 85. In an Instagram post, Bakula described Stockwell as “a dear friend and a mentor,” and credited the veteran character actor as “making him a better human being.”
“He became a dear friend and a mentor and we grew very close over the next five, very intense years,” Bakula wrote about Stockwell. “Dean was such a passionate man…about life, his work, his art(he was an amazing artist!), his family, all kinds of causes, people, music, the planet, cigars, golf, and on and on!”
Bakula added: “In spite of having a career that came and went several times during his seventy plus years in the business, he was always grateful and delighted to have the chance to keep working. ... He used to announce his presence on the sound stage(if we hadn’t already caught a whiff of cigar smoke trailing in behind him), with a bellowed, ‘The fun starts now!’ Truer words were never spoken.”
“I loved him dearly and was honored to know him,” Bakula concluded. “He made me a better human being…”
Bakula and Stockwell starred in all 97 episodes of Quantum Leap together.
Other colleagues of Stockwell also paid their respects to their late colleague.
Filmmaker and amateur meteorologist David Lynch, who directed Stockwell in Dune (1984) and Blue Velvet (1986), recently used his Weather Report to pay tribute to his late colleague. “In honor of the great Dean Stockwell, I’d like to recommend today ‘Honky Tonk Part 1,’ by Bill Doggett,” Lynch said. The song is what’s playing when viewers first encounter Stockwell’s character Ben in Blue Velvet.
Meanwhile, Edward James Olmos, who starred in Battlestar Galactica with Stockwell, wrote on Twitter: "A true giant of a human being has passed. I was so fortunate to have worked with him on Miami Vice and Battlestar. I will cherish the years we spent together He was a gift to all who truly knew him. #RIP #SoSayWeAll"
Tricia Helfer added: "Such an honor to have gotten to work with Dean Stockwell. An incredible career and a truly unique and lovely man. RIP Dean. #SoSayWeAll"