A Florida town once made Don Knotts an honorary deputy

While making an appearance to promote his film, Knotts was given the award of a lifetime.

Although at times, Barney Fife was a less than effective deputy on The Andy Griffth Show, he still charmed the hearts of countless viewers who tuned in to watch his escapades. Fife could be a bit scatterbrained at times, but he had a heart of gold and a good attitude, which made him the perfect deputy to Sheriff Taylor.

According to an interview with the Boca Raton News, Knotts made such an impact as Barney Fife that a police that a Florida town actually made him an honorary deputy. 

Jupiter Police Chief awarded Knotts an honorary deputy badge and said, "We all were fans of Barney Fife. We thought this would be a nice way to welcome Don Knotts to our town." 

Knotts was given the badge, along with his trademark single bullet, during an appearance for his film Last of the Red Hot Lovers. While the ceremony took place in 1990, years after The Andy Griffith Show had gone off the air, Knotts had clearly still made enough of an impact with the character that the townspeople felt it easy to award him with the title.

When accepting the prize, Knotts joked. "I get more bullets than badges. I've got a carload of 'em."

Still, while the character of Barney Fife is well-loved by many, Knotts was quick to admit that he and his fellow deputy were not one and the same.

He said, "I'm not anything like any of the characters I play. Why do people always tag me with that nervous character?"

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3 Comments

Runeshaper 24 days ago
That was really cool 😎 of the Jupiter Police Chief 👍🏻
cperrynaples 25 days ago
Clearly there was a mistake here! The only film version of that play starred Alan Arkin! This is what I believe the truth was: It is well known here in Florida that Burt Reynolds ran a dinner theater in Jupiter! I think Knotts performed the play there and that's how he got the badge and bullet!
Irish 26 days ago
Would love to have him as a deputy! It sure would break the monotony! 🥰
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