Monday, February 27, 2006

Don Knotts Dies

Don Knotts, who won five Emmys for portraying the bungling deputy Barney Fife on the hit television program "The Andy Griffith Show," has died at age 81, a spokesman said on Saturday.

Knotts died on Friday night at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Beverly Hills, California, of pulmonary and respiratory complications, said Paul Ward, a spokesman for the TV Land cable network, which airs old television programs including "Andy Griffith."

His former co-star Andy Griffith was at Knotts' bedside when he died, as were Knotts' third wife, Francie, and his children, Thomas and Karen, an actress, Ward said in a statement.

Knotts' bug-eyed, high-strung character helped make "The Andy Griffith Show," a sitcom about a folksy sheriff in small-town America, one of the most popular U.S. television shows of the 1960s.