Jim Nabors Honored in Home State

The Associated Press
Monday, April 24, 2006; 2:01 PM

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- Jim Nabors, best known as television's Gomer Pyle, has been inducted into the Alabama Stage & Screen Hall of Fame.

At the Saturday ceremony, an episode was shown from the '60s comedy "Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C." in which Nabors sang the stirring "The Impossible Dream." Nabors, an Alabama native, told the gala audience of about 400 people that it was the first time he'd seen that recording of the song.

"I really never watched myself on TV," he said. "Now I know why."

Nabors also played Pyle on "The Andy Griffith Show."

The 75-year-old actor-singer entertained the audience with true-life stories, spun in a Gomer "can you believe this?" fashion, but choked up when talking about Carol Burnett, who helped him through his health problems. He had a brush with death in the early '90s before a liver transplant saved his life.

"Carol is like a sister to me," he said. "Carol saved my life."

"I could go on all night about my wonderful experiences," he said. But he concluded simply, "It's always good to be home."

© 2006 The Associated Press