Everyone’s favorite Colonel has died. Harry Morgan, who was best known for his role on TV’s M*A*S*H, has passed away. He died on Dec. 7 at the respectable age of 96.
Famous character actor and Emmy-winner Harry Morgan has died. The TV legend, who appeared on such shows and M*A*S*H and Dragnet, passed away Wednesday morning at his Los Angeles home.
According to the New York Times, Morgan’s death was confirmed by his son Charles. He revealed the actor had been battling a recent case of pneumonia. At the time of his death, Morgan was 96 years old and had lived a life most actor’s dream of. Born in Detroit, Michigan, he was the child of Norwegian immigrants and had early ambitions to become a lawyer. But his focus quickly shifted to theater after attending the University of Chicago. He went on to make his Broadway debut in 1937 in the original production of Golden Boy, alongside Luther Adler, Karl Malden and Lee J. Cobb.
Over the course of his career, Morgan appeared in over 100 movies including The Ox-Bow Incident, State Fair and High Noon. But his big break came in television when he starred opposite Jack Webb in the revamped Dragnet. For four seasons, he played Officer Bill Gannon to Webb’s Sgt. Joe Friday. When the show was cancelled in 1970, he appeared in several made-for-TV movies before landing his most famous role.
In 1974, Morgan starred in the Korean War-based comedy M*A*S*H as Colonel Sherman T. Potter. Thanks to his memorable performance, he was honored with a Primetime Emmy Award for best supporting actor in a comedy series.
Morgan was a consummate professional with an amazing gift. He was able to sustain his career because of his great work ethic and photographic memory. His son Charles revealed, “My dad would read a script the way somebody else would read Time magazine and put it down and be on the set the next day.”
Morgan is survived by his wife Barbara Bushman and three sons: Charles, Christopher and Paul.