MANTEO, NORTH CAROLINA (BNO NEWS) -- American actor Andy Griffith, who is perhaps best remembered for his portrayal of a small-town sheriff on the 1960s television series 'The Andy Griffith Show', died at his North Carolina home on early Tuesday morning. He was 86.
Griffith died at around 7 a.m. local time at his home in the town of Manteo on Roanoke Island in North Carolina, Dare County Sheriff J.D. Doughtie said. He died as a result of an illness, his family said, without elaborating. His wife Cindi was at his side when he passed away.
"Andy was a person of incredibly strong Christian faith and was prepared for the day he would be called Home to his Lord," Cindi said. "He is the love of my life, my constant companion, my partner, and my best friend. I cannot imagine life without Andy, but I take comfort and strength in God's Grace and in the knowledge that Andy is at peace and with God."
Griffith was laid to rest within several hours on Roanoke Island.
Born in Mount Airy, North Carolina, Griffith is probably best remembered for his role as the widowed sheriff Andy Taylor on 'The Andy Griffith Show,' which ran from 1960 to 1968. He also starred in the hit TV show 'Matlock,' from the mid-1980s to the early 90s, as the criminal defense attorney Ben Matlock.
Griffith initially wanted to be an opera singer as well as a preacher and received a Grammy Award late in his career for Best Southern, Country or Bluegrass Gospel Album in 1997. In 2005, he also received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from U.S. President George W. Bush.
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