Beloved character actor George Lindsey who played Goober for years on THE ANDY GRIFFITH SHOW, has died at the age of 83. Lindsey played the very likable gas station attendant for years on both THE ANDY GRIFFITH SHOW and MAYBERRY RFD from 1964 to 1971. Then Lindsey was signed on with HEE HAW from 1971 to 1993. His comic Southern style made him seem like a humorous everyman character.
Although Lindsey was born in the well populated Jefferson County in Alabama, he seemed as small town folk as you can get, thanks to his acting skills. Lindsay died in Nashville Tennessee, where much of his career seemed to take place as he became a favorite comic personality with those in the country music culture. HEE HAW seemed like a perfect match for Lindsey, as country music traditionally had a number of comics associated with it. Even at the Grand Ole Opry was it common for a musical guest to perform in between folksy comics such as Minnie Pearl. Minnie Pearl performed comedy at the Grand Ole Opry for 50 years for example.
Lindsey never forgot his native Alabama and raised over $1 million for the Alabama chapter of the Special Olympics from a celebrity golf tournament he organized and sponsored. He also raised $50,000 to help retarded citizens through another charity effort. Lindsay was one of the kindest, most decent and generous persons you could possibly ever find.
Lindsey actually held a degree in Bioscience, and was even a high school teacher at one time besides serving in the Air Force. But, his love of acting drove him toward a career before the camera.
On camera, Lindsey and Jim Nabors, played the loyal, but dim witted Pyle brothers, Goober and Gomer Pyle. But, George Lindsey was actually a far deeper actor than his typecast Goober role might suggest. On GUNSMOKE he once well played an outlaw gunslinger who shot Matt Dillon for example. He also played in a TWILIGHT ZONE episode among other guest roles on many TV shows. But, his beloved Goober character was his most memorable one of a pleasant loyal fellow who was everyone’s friend.
The actor died after a brief illness on Sunday.
Our prayers and best wishes go out to his family and loved ones. George Lindsey was part of our lives for decades. His passing marks another milestone change in our lives.