It’s difficult not to be sad that Jim Nabors died yesterday. Even Governor David Ige got a bit broken up.
“I grew up watching Jim Nabors on TV and am saddened by the passing of this American entertainment icon,” Ige said in a statement released to the press yesterday afternoon. “We were fortunate that he chose to make his home in Hawaii where he contributed to our community in many ways. Dawn and I extend our condolences to Stan.”
An actor and singer famous around the world for his role as the Gomer Pyle, in both The Andy Griffith Show and Gomer Pyle USMC, the Marine Corps actually named Nabors an “Honorary Marine.” In 1976, Nabors moved to Hawaii, which is where he died on Nov. 30 at the age of 87.
For a few years, Nabors also owned a few hundred acres in Hana, where he grew macadamia nuts. In 1999, the photojournalist John Yasunaga shot this charming video of Nabors at his home there:
Nabors is survived by his husband Stan Cadwallader, a former Honolulu fire fighter. The two were married in Seattle in 2013 after being together for 38 years.
2010 Photo of Jim Nabors: Orlando Perez, USMC/Department of Defense