Kenneth Mitchell, Star Trek and Captain Marvel actor, dies aged 49

<span>Kenneth Mitchell arrives at the Star Trek: Discovery premiere in Hollywood, California, on 19 September 2017.</span><span>Photograph: Sipa US/Alamy</span>
Kenneth Mitchell arrives at the Star Trek: Discovery premiere in Hollywood, California, on 19 September 2017.Photograph: Sipa US/Alamy

Canadian actor Kenneth Mitchell, known for roles in Star Trek: Discovery and the Marvel film Captain Marvel, has died following complications from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS.

Mitchell, who was 49-years-old, died on Saturday, according to a statement released by his verified Instagram account.

“With heavy hearts we announce the passing of Kenneth Alexander Mitchell, beloved father, husband, brother, uncle, son and dear friend to many,” the statement said.

“For five and a half years Ken faced a series of awful challenges from ALS. And in truest Ken fashion, he managed to rise above each one with grace and commitment to living a full and joyous life in each moment,” it added.

“He lived by the principles that each day is a gift and that we never walk alone. His life is a shining example of how full one can be when you live with love, compassion, humour, inclusion, and community,” it continued.

In a statement on the official Star Trek website, the franchise also mourned the death of the actor who played multiple roles in Star Trek: Discovery including Klingons Kol, Kol-Sha, and Tenavik, as well as Aurellio.

“The entire Star Trek family sends their condolences to Mitchell’s family, friends, loved ones, and fans around the world,” it added.

In addition to his Star Trek roles, Mitchell also starred in the Marvel film Captain Marvel, as well as the post-apocalyptic television series Jericho, among other projects.

Mitchell is survived by his wife Susan May Pratt and their two children, and has requested any gifts be directed towards ALS research or in support of his children, the Instagram statement said.

With an average of 5,000 people diagnosed every year in the US, ALS is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord. Symptoms include difficulty walking, slurred speech as well as muscle weakness which eventually impacts chewing, swallowing, speaking and breathing.