Carol Burnett sent Jim Nabors a fan letter and he didn't believe it was real

Nabors assumed someone was playing a prank on him when he received a letter addressed to him from Carol Burnett.

CBS Television Distribution

Jim Nabors was a talented actor, a kind person, and just a downright likable guy. In fact, it was this likeability that not only earned him respect from viewers of The Andy Griffith Show and Gomer Pyle U.S.M.C. but also his peers.

In an interview with The Toronto Star, Andy Griffith, who had Nabors audition for the role of Gomer Pyle in the first place, explained that originally, the character was only supposed to appear once. "O'course he [Nabors] was so good," Griffith said, "we wrote him right in as a regular."

Griffith first saw Nabors performing in a nightclub and instantly felt a kinship with the man. "At that time, I didn't know Jim Nabors from anybody," Griffith said. "But I liked him very much and we became friends."

Another fan of Nabors was the queen of comedy herself, Carol Burnett. Burnett was such a fan of Nabors that she took the time to write and send a fan letter to the actor, letting him know just how much she admired him. Burnett sent the letter after Nabors' first appearance as Gomer on The Andy Griffith Show, already recognizing his raw comedic talent.

It was one of the highest forms of praise that someone can receive, and Nabors should have been overjoyed. The only catch is that when Nabors received the letter, he thought it was a fake.

"When I got it, I thought somebody was puttin' me on," Nabors said. It took meeting Burnett in person for him to realize that the letter wasn't a form of practical joke. "It wasn't until later when I met her in New York that she told me it was for real," he said. The two would go on to form a deep friendship, and Nabors would often appear on The Carol Burnett Show.

Watch The Andy Griffith Show on MeTV!

Weeknights at 8 & 8:30, Sundays at 6 & 6:30 PM

*available in most MeTV markets
Are you sure you want to delete this comment?
Close

6 Comments

Jimtypes 6 days ago
Well, it must have been true. Carol called Jim Nabors her good luck charm and included him every season someplace on her show.
Abergine 8 days ago
I don't think so. According to Carol Burnett, she knew Jim Nabors since they were both children.
MaryMitch Abergine 7 days ago
I doubt that. Carol grew up in Texas and Hollywood; Jim grew up in Alabama.
joenic27 8 days ago
Carol Burnett also appeared in some episodes of Gomer Pyle USMC, in between her stints with Gary Moore and her own series.
McGillahooala 9 days ago
I saw Jim Nabors in Branson. He was the nicest guy. He walked up and down the aisles during the show. Everyone in the place had a front row seat at some point.
FrankensteinLover 9 days ago
Such an awesome story and the real friendship they had. Loyalty is rare and beautiful
Are you sure you want to delete this comment?