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Last Updated: Thursday, 7 September 2006, 07:27 GMT 08:27 UK
'How Star Trek changed my life'
Scotty blasts open a door - image courtesy of STARTREK.COM
David first saw Star Trek as a re-run on UK television in 1983
Star Trek, which is celebrating 40 years, has had a lasting impact on the life of 25-year-old fan David Holley.

It has helped him overcome a fear of flying, inspired his job, and made him friends around the world.

He explains how the science fiction show has changed his life.

I actually watched my first episode when I was three years old in 1983.

I enjoyed it but, at that point, I was watching Inspector Gadget and He-Man as well, so I didn't really think too much of it.

But a number of years later I saw a video and thought: 'I remember watching that. I'll buy that'.

I spent my pocket money on it and ever since then I fell in love with it.

David Holley
Every single night I would cast my mind back and think to myself: 'What would Patrick Stewart do in this situation?'
Star Trek fan David Holley
The morals that come through on every story are absolutely superb - about race, religion and culture - even sexual orientation at times.

It made a big, big difference in my life and influenced me to become non-xenophobic and non-racist.

Career guidance

After university, I became deputy manager of a training provider helping multicultural people.

Some of them couldn't speak a word of English, and some had gone through the education system and failed.

They had been looked upon as people who just couldn't achieve in life in regards of their age, their race, or their ability to communicate.

Every single night I would cast my mind back and think to myself: 'What would Patrick Stewart do in this situation?'

Aliens in Star Trek - image courtesy STARTREK.COM
The show's message of tolerance for others inspired David's career
And I thought maybe I could, with a bit of education, develop that and hopefully make a difference within Yorkshire.

I decided to go and teach myself again and I got into the different legislations, and ended up as a diversity consultant, working with a black and ethnic minority housing association.

The one thing which I've learnt from Star Trek, quite simply, is to respect everybody, every culture and every life you come across - even if it's just for the briefest second.

When I was 18 years old I lost my mum in a car accident, and I actually used Star Trek as a bit of a comfort blanket.

The show deals with that on a day-to-day basis. The loss of family and how you deal with certain things.

There's always different connotations within each show which teach us how to deal with everyday life.

It's told me never to give up, to keep on trying to do as much as you can do.

Fear of flying

It was always my dream to go out across America and try and visit some of the different locations where they filmed Star Trek.

There was only one snag in that, unlike most of the Star Trek characters who flew across the galaxy, I was actually afraid to fly across in a plane.

Quark from Deep Space Nine - image courtesy of STARTREK.COM
David once dressed as the character Quark from Deep Space Nine
So I actually had to combat that, and I ended up in Las Vegas, where they have the Star Trek Experience.

It was absolutely phenomenal and gave me the chance to almost touch part of the show which has obviously touched my life and had a huge effect on me.

As a Trekker, you meet all sorts. We go about our business and we're not all dressed up in different outfits.

Dare I say it, I've only done that once in my whole life - as Quark, the barman from Deep Space Nine.

We're basically a big extended family, which is really how the world should exist anyway - and that's how it existed in the show.

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