NCIS Honors David McCallum: A Farewell to Ducky and a Nostalgic Journey Through Two Decades

The episode, titled “The Stories We Leave Behind,” opened with an emotional scene of Jimmy Palmer, played by Brian Dietzen (who co-wrote the episode), discovering Ducky’s peaceful passing at home.

David McCallum
David McCallum

In a poignant episode, NCIS paid its final tribute to the late David McCallum, who, at the age of 90, bid farewell on September 25. McCallum’s enduring role as Donald “Ducky” Mallard, the last original cast member, spanned an impressive two decades.

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The episode, titled “The Stories We Leave Behind,” opened with an emotional scene of Jimmy Palmer, played by Brian Dietzen (who co-wrote the episode), discovering Ducky’s peaceful passing at home, adorned in his monogrammed pajamas, with his faithful corgi by his side.

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As the storyline unfolded, viewers were taken on a nostalgic journey through significant moments in Ducky’s tenure, featuring Leroy Gibbs (Mark Harmon), Tony DiNozzo (Michael Weatherly), Ziva David (Cote de Pablo), and Abby Sciuto (Pauley Perrette). The episode skillfully interwove these flashbacks with Ducky’s final case, involving a soldier named Danny whose reputation was marred by a corrupt councilman, Allan Berger.

The team, embodying Ducky’s commitment to justice, uncovered the truth and redeemed Danny’s name. This transitioned seamlessly into a heartfelt memorial for Ducky. A touching surprise awaited Jimmy Palmer as Tony DiNozzo, portrayed by Michael Weatherly, made a special appearance, presenting Palmer with a bowtie reminiscent of Ducky’s signature style.

Mark Harmon’s reprisal of Leroy Gibbs added a poignant touch, bridging the past and the present. Despite Weatherly’s absence from CBS since 2022, his return for this special occasion brought a sense of nostalgia for fans, marking a poignant reunion with the NCIS family.

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The episode concluded with a title card that eloquently expressed, “In memory of our dear friend and colleague David McCallum. We will miss you,” serving as a fitting tribute to McCallum’s enduring legacy on NCIS.

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