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‘Gomer Pyle’ Star Jim Nabors Dead at 87

‘Gomer Pyle’ Star Jim Nabors Dead at 87
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Nabors (upper L) with the "Return to Mayberry" cast in 1986

“Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C.” star Jim Nabors has passed away at the age of 87.

Nabors’ husband Stan Cadwallader confirmed to The Associated Press that he died at his Hawaii home. The cause of his death is still unknown.

Nabors had undergone a liver transplant in 1994.

Before getting his "Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C." spin-off, which ran from 1964-1969, Nabors had originated the lovable doofus on “The Andy Griffith Show" (1962-1964). His character's trademark was a drawled, "Goll-ly."

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Nabors as Gomer Pyle in 1964

Nabors appeared on many other TV shows, including “The Steve Allen Show” (1961), and co-starred in three Burt Reynolds movies:“The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas" (1982), “Stroker Ace” (1983) and “Cannonball Run II" (1984).

Nabors also recorded more than 20 albums, four of them certified gold.

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At the time of his final Indy 500 performance in 2014

Nabors traditionally sang “Back Home Again in Indiana” at the opening ceremony of the Indianapolis 500, something he did almost every year from 1972 to 2014. He said at the time of his last performance of the song, "I'll be honest with you — I didn't want to stay too long at the fair. Everyone has been so incredible to me so many years. The first time I was here was 1972, so I guess most people have grown up with me."

Four years before his passing, Nabors came out as gay and wed Cadwallader — whom he had met in 1975 — in a Seattle hotel room.