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Trenitty was the stage name of Thuy Trang, a Vietnamese-American actress who was best known for her role as Trini Kwan, the original Yellow Ranger on the television series Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. She died in a car crash at the age of 27 on September 3, 2001, leaving behind a legacy of fans and friends who mourned her loss.
Early Life and Career
Thuy Trang was born in Saigon, South Vietnam, on December 14, 1973, to a family of four siblings and a father who was a South Vietnamese army officer. After the fall of Saigon in 1975, her father fled the country and sought political asylum in the United States, while Trang and her family stayed behind in a detention camp. In 1979, they managed to escape on a cargo ship bound for Hong Kong, where they reunited with Trang’s father and immigrated to the U.S. in 1980. They settled in California, where Trang attended high school and college. She studied civil engineering at the University of California, Irvine, but switched her focus to acting after being discovered by a talent scout. She landed her first major role as Trini Kwan, the Yellow Ranger, on Mighty Morphin Power Rangers in 1993, after auditioning with about 500 other actresses. She became a fan favorite for her portrayal of the smart, kind, and courageous character, who was also one of the first Asian-American superheroes on television. She performed many of her own stunts and was skilled in martial arts. She appeared in 80 episodes of the series, including the entire first season and the first 20 episodes of the second season.
Leaving Power Rangers and Other Projects
Trang left Mighty Morphin Power Rangers in 1994, along with fellow cast members Austin St. John and Walter Emanuel Jones, due to contractual and payment disputes with the producers. She was replaced by Karan Ashley as a new Yellow Ranger named Aisha Campbell. Trang went on to pursue other acting opportunities, such as a brief appearance in the comedy film Spy Hard (1996) and a lead role as one of the villains in the action film The Crow: City of Angels (1996). She also planned to star in several films with St. John and Jones, but none of them were made. She remained close friends with her former Power Rangers co-stars, especially Amy Jo Johnson, who played the Pink Ranger.
Death and Legacy
On September 3, 2001, Trang was a passenger in a car driven by her friend, model Angela Rockwood, when they were involved in a fatal accident on Interstate 5 near Bakersfield, California. The car went off the road and rolled several times, ejecting both women from the vehicle. Trang died at the scene from internal injuries, while Rockwood survived but was paralyzed from the neck down. Trang was buried at Rose Hills Memorial Park in Whittier, California. She was 27 years old. Her death shocked and saddened her fans and colleagues, who paid tribute to her in various ways. The Power Rangers Time Force episode “Circuit Unsure” was dedicated to her memory, as well as the 2017 Power Rangers film, which featured a cameo by Johnson. In 2018, a fan-made short film titled Power Rangers: Shattered Past was released, which featured a special tribute to Trang. The film was written and filmed with Trang’s legacy in mind and focused on the aftermath of the death of Trini Kwan in the Power Rangers universe. Trang is remembered as a talented and beautiful actress, who broke barriers and inspired generations of fans with her role as the Yellow Ranger. She is also remembered as a kind and generous person, who cared deeply for her family and friends. Her life and death are a testament to the power of resilience and courage in the face of adversity.