James Thurston "Jim" Nabors (born June 12, 1930) is an American actor and singer.
Born and raised in Sylacauga, Alabama, he sang for his high school and church, and he had two sisters. He attended the University of Alabama, where he began acting in skits. While at Alabama, he became a member of Delta Tau Delta International Fraternity. After graduating, he moved to New York City where he worked as a typist for the United Nations. After a year, he moved to Chattanooga, Tennessee, where he got his first job in the television industry as a film cutter.
Nabors moved to southern California because of his asthma, and worked as a film cutter for NBC. While also working at a Santa Monica nightclub, The Horn, he was discovered by Andy Griffith and later joined The Andy Griffith Show, playing Gomer Pyle. The character proved popular, and Nabors was given his own spin-off show, Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C..
Though known for his portrayal of Gomer Pyle, Nabors became a popular guest on variety shows in the 1960s and 1970s (including two specials of his own in 1969 and 1974), which showcased his rich baritone voice. He subsequently recorded numerous albums and singles, most of them containing romantic ballads.
Nabors is also known for singing "Back Home Again in Indiana", prior to the start of the Indianapolis 500, held annually over the Memorial Day Weekend. Except for a few absences due to health or other conflicts, Nabors sang the unofficial Indiana anthem every year from 1972 until his final time in 2014.
Nabors began vacationing in Hawaii in the 1960s, and in 1976, moved from Bel Air, California, to Honolulu, Hawaii. For 25 years, he owned a macadamia plantation on Maui before selling it to the National Tropical Botanical Garden, a conservationist organization, though he still retained farming rights to the land and owned a second home on the property.
Nabors married his partner of 38 years, Stan Cadwallader, at Seattle, Washington's Fairmont Olympic Hotel on January 15, 2013, a month after same-sex marriage became legal in Washington. Although he had been closeted before this, his sexual orientation was not completely secret; for instance, Nabors brought his then-boyfriend Cadwallader along to his Indy 500 performance in 1978.
Jim Nabors received an honorary promotion to Lance Corporal by Commandant of the Marine Corps James L. Jones in 2001, and on September 25, 2007, he was promoted to honorary Corporal by Lt. General John F. Goodman. In 2013, he received an honorary promotion to Sergeant during the 238th Marine Corps birthday ball celebration by Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. James F. Amos.
Nabors, along with U.S. Senator Daniel Inouye, was honored on January 19, 2007, at "A Night of American Heroes", a yearly dinner held in benefit of the Battleship Missouri Memorial at Pearl Harbor.
Upon his death, the United States Marine Corps released a statement on Nabors: "Semper Fi, Gomer Pyle. Rest in peace Jim Nabors, one of the few to ever be named an Honorary Marine."
Find A Grave: Memorial #185595436
Died aged 87 years old
Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed 21 December 2017), memorial page for Jim Nabors (12 Jun 1930–30 Nov 2017), Find A Grave Memorial no. 185595436, ; Maintained by Find A Grave Unknown.
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On 11 Jun 2016 at 04:45 GMT Bob Fields wrote: