Actors Scott Bakula and Dean Stockwell were a dynamic duo on the sci-fi TV series Quantum Leap (1989-1993).

Sadly, we've now lost actor Dean Stockwell, who died on Nov. 7 at the age of 85. Tributes are pouring in and Bakula has now spoken on how much Stockwell meant to him. "I loved him dearly and was honored to know him," Bakula said of his Quantum Leap co-star.

Quantum Leap: Scott Bakula pays tribute to Dean Stockwell

News of Stockwell's passing came late on Monday night, and Bakula spoke out today in a thoughtful tribute on Instagram. Here it is in full:

"I met Dean at his audition for Quantum Leap in 1988," Bakula began. "He had agreed to 'read' for the Network, I was already cast. We connected immediately and my career and my life were changed that day in Brandon Tartikoff's office.

"How lucky were we to get him?" Bakula remarked. "A few months later he would be nominated for an Academy Award for his role in Married to the Mob, but he was stuck with us. Serendipity? All I know is, he never tried to get out or complain, he loved the role and the show and the rest was history."

Dean Stockwell has died at 85. He was on Quantum Leap with Scott Bakula.

Getting more personal, Bakula continued: "He became a dear friend and a mentor and we grew very close over the next five, very intense years. Dean was such a passionate man… about life, his work, his art (he was an amazing artist!), his family, all kinds of causes, people, music, the planet, cigars, golf, and on and on!

"Having been a famous child actor, he had a soft spot for every young actor who came on our set. He was very protective of their rights and safety and always checked in with them to make sure that they were ok. His big hearted response to the kids made all of us take notice and be better guardians ourselves," Bakula wrote.

"In spite of having a career that came and went several times during his seventy plus years in the business, he was always grateful and delighted to have the chance to keep working.

"The only time he ever complained was when we called him on the golf course and told him we were ready for him to come to work! He used to announce his presence on the sound stage (if we hadn't already caught a whiff of cigar smoke trailing in behind him), with a bellowed, 'The fun starts now!' Truer words were never spoken."

Bakula concluded: "I loved him dearly and was honored to know him. He made me a better human being…" With the tribute, he added a photo of Stockwell suited up on Quantum Leap as "Al Calavicci."

Stockwell passed away at the age of 85 on Nov. 7 at his home in New Mexico. A rep for the family told the press that he died of natural causes.