The world mourns the loss of “NCIS” star David McCallum at the age of 90. A prolific actor throughout the 1960s to the 1980s, McCallum left an indelible mark with roles like Illya Kuryakin on “The Man From U.N.C.L.E.” and Dr. Donald “Ducky” Mallard on “NCIS.”

Unlike his co-star Mark Harmon, McCallum did not receive a farewell on “NCIS” comparable to Harmon’s in 2021. His sporadic appearances in the most recent season, culminating in the Season 20 finale, “Black Sky,” turned out to be his final performance as Ducky Mallard.

While McCallum’s role had diminished in recent seasons, with only four appearances in Season 20, he provided crucial information in his last episode. In a November 2022 interview, McCallum expressed a sense of disconnection on the set, stating, “It’s like being in a different show. It doesn’t quite make sense anymore.”

Executive producer Charles Floyd Johnson acknowledged McCallum’s reduced presence, citing difficulty and a readiness to retire. McCallum never officially left or retired, but due to strikes delaying production, he couldn’t record additional scenes after the Season 20 finale.

Whether McCallum had plans to return remains unknown. Still, fans can celebrate his substantial contributions over his 20-year tenure on “NCIS,” remembering the memorable episodes featuring Ducky.

By chrysos