Notable reaction to the death of actor-singer Jim Nabors

Jim Nabors, the Alabama-born comic actor who starred as TV's dim but good-hearted Southern rube Gomer Pyle and constantly surprised audiences with his twang-free operatic singing voice, died Thursday. 

He was 87.

Nabors, who underwent a liver transplant in 1994 after contracting hepatitis B, died peacefully at his home in Hawaii after his health had declined for the past year, said his husband, Stan Cadwallader, who was by his side.

A number of notable inviduals reacted to his death.

"Jim and I remained close friends for 52 years. He was the godfather of my daughter, Jody. Every year he was always the first guest on my variety show. I considered him my 'good luck charm.' My heart is heavy. I'm grateful he was a large part of my life. I miss him. I love him.'' - Carol Burnett, in a statement.

"Jim Nabors was gentle man with immense talent. Condolences to his husband Stan and family.'' - Talk show host Larry King, via Twitter

"Sgt Gomer Pyle was the first 'gay' character on TV.'' - Comedian Roseanne Barr, via Twitter

"Jim was not only a treasured friend, but truly a cherished member of our family. We will never forget his genuine kindness, sincerity and loyalty. He was wonderful man who inspired millions of people across the globe every May and throughout his entire life.'' - The Hulman-George family, which owns the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, in a statement posted on the track's website

"It's a sad day. Jim Nabors will always be the voice of Back Home Again in Indiana. Rest in peace, Jim.'' - Brazilian race car driver Tony Kanaan, via Twitter

"I loved his work. He made me laugh really really hard and that's a gift. Thank you Jim Nabors! Our family sends much love to his family, friends, colleagues & fans.'' Actor Sean Astin, via Twitter

"I met Jim Nabors just once, about 10 years ago, and he was as nice as you'd assume. RIP'' - Actor Michael McKean, via Twitter