TV legend Jim Nabors honored

Jim Nabors
Jim Nabors

By Leland Kim - bio | email

WAIKIKI (KHNL) -  TV legend and Hawaii's own Jim Nabors was honored Friday night.  The actor, best known as Gomer Pyle from the TV series of the same name, will receive the American Patriot award, given by the Navy League of Honolulu.

Nabors has been in show business for nearly 50 years.  He's had a successful career in acting as well as singing, and created friendships with celebrities like former U.S. President Ronald Reagan, his wife Nancy, and Carol Burnett.

Bcause of his portrayal of Gomer Pyle, he's developed a close relationship with the military, especially the Marine Corps.

"The general asked me if I would go over and say hello to the boys who just came back from Iraq and Afghanistan and I said, 'They won't know who I am. (The general said,) No, I think they will,'" recalled Nabors.  "So I walked over there and there are all these young Marines. I said hi and they said, 'Oh my God.' I said, 'How you guys know me?' (They said,) 'Well you play every day in Iraq.' I said, 'You gotta be kidding.'"

His honor, from the Navy League of Hawaii, was presented to the 79-year-old actor and singer, Friday night at the Sheraton Waikiki.