I don’t know why this came as a surprise:
Jim Nabors, a singer and comic actor who played the bumbling but good-natured hayseed Gomer Pyle on “The Andy Griffith Show” before starring as an unlikely Marine recruit in “Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C.,” one of the most popular sitcoms of the 1960s, died Nov. 30 at his home in Honolulu. He was 87.
His death was confirmed to the Associated Press by his husband, Stan Cadwallader. The cause was not disclosed, but Mr. Nabors had a liver transplant in 1994 and heart surgery in 2012.
Mr. Nabors had never acted before Griffith saw him perform at a nightclub, where he portrayed a bumpkin whose high-pitched drawl changed to an operatic baritone when he broke into song.
Yes, he was old. That means I’m old since it didn’t cross my mind that he was old.
This was the essence of Gomer: