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9:40 AM PST 11/30/2017 by Mike Barnes and Duane Byrge

The Alabama native with the rich baritone voice also had his own CBS variety show and recorded several hit albums.

Jim Nabors, who starred as Gomer Pyle on The Andy Griffith Show and on his own sitcom before retiring the wide-eyed, countrified character at the height of his popularity, has died. He was 87. 

Nabors died at his home in Hawaii on Thursday morning, his longtime partner told the Associated Press.

A native of Alabama, Nabors also recorded more than two dozen albums with a rich, operatic baritone voice that surprised those who were used to hearing him exclaim "Gawwwleee!" with a Southern twang on television. For many years, Nabors sang "Back Home Again in Indiana" during the opening ceremonies for the Indianapolis 500.

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