The artist famous for playing Thelma Lou on “The Andy Griffith Show” and retired to move to Griffith’s hometown has passed away. Betty Lynn was 95 years old.
The television, radio and film actress who performed for American soldiers in war zones in Southeast Asia during World War II died of a brief illness on Saturday.
“Betty’s performances as Thelma Lou and in other roles will continue to entertain generations of grateful audiences. More than that, everyone who met Betty is forever grateful to have known such a beautiful soul, ”the Andy Griffith Museum announced on its Facebook page.
Lynn played Barney Fife’s girlfriend, Thelma Lou, on the show for 26 episodes between 1961 and 1966.
“Of the Griffith actors still living at the time of Betty’s death, only Ron Howard has appeared in more episodes of the series than Betty,” the museum said.
Lynn has always been a Catholic and a member of St. Timothy’s Catholic Church in Los Angeles and the Holy Angels Catholic Church in Mount Airy, North Carolina, where she settled in 2006 and has appeared regularly at the Griffith Museum. . Her love for the show and her legion of fans appreciated her even more.
“The fans are so nice,” Betty said. “I really like meeting them and having the chance to visit them a bit. They come from all over the country. It’s so touching that they still remember my movies and love The Andy Griffith Show the way they do. And especially for the Griffith show, there are also a lot of young children who are fans. So, I think the popularity of the series continues through the new generations. Which makes me happy.”
The Missouri native began studying dance at the age of 5 and performed at 14 on local radio shows where she was discovered by scouts for the United Service Organizations.
“She and guitarist Tommy Decker began their overseas tour with stops in Casablanca and then Iran before eventually making their way to the China-Burma-India Theater of War, where they visited and performed for the military in a large scale. part of the war zone, but with their main mission being to console and entertain wounded servicemen in military hospitals, ”the museum said.
Lynn was honored after the war with a Special Commendation from the United States War Department and as Honorary Colonel of the American Legion.
After the war, Lynn moved to New York and later to Hollywood to pursue an acting career. She has performed in roles with Twentieth Century-Fox, RKO, MGM and Universal. His film performances included “Cheaper by the Dozen”, “Many Rivers to Cross” and “Behind the High Wall”.
She has also starred in TV shows like the comedy “Where’s Raymond”, “Peg O ‘My Heart” and many others. She was featured in television westerns in the 1950s and 1960s, including episodes of “Bronco”, “Wagon Train”, “Cheyenne”, “Tales of Wells Fargo” and “Sugarfoot”.
In the 1990s, she joined Andy Griffith at reunion events and festivals across the country and appeared with Griffith in a few episodes of the first season of “Matlock”.