George Lindsey, best known for his portrayal as the dense but gentle “Goober Pyle” on ‘The Andy Griffith Show,’ has died after suffering from a brief illness. He was 83 years old.

Goober was the Alabama-raised actor’s big break in the early 60s. The character, portraying Gomer Pyle’s cousin, was created to replace Jim Nabors after he left the show in 1964.

Although he was best known as Goober, Lindsey had a long television career that included a recurring role on ‘Hee-Haw,’ and ‘Love, American Style,’ an episode of ‘M*A*S*H,’ and ‘The Twilight Zone,’ as well as three episodes of ‘The Alfred Hitchcock Hour,’ to name a few.

He also enjoyed a successful career in the movies, appearing in ‘Cannonball Run II’ and ‘Take This Job and Shove It.’ Lindsey’s voice was also used in the Walt Disney classics ‘The Aristocrats,’ ‘Robin Hood,’ and finally ‘The Rescuers’ in 1977.

Lindsey devoted a great deal of time to raising money for the Alabama Special Olympics. For 17 years he also sponsored a celebrity golf tournament in Montgomery, Alabama, raising money for people with mental disabilities.