Jim Nabors -- otherwise known as Gomer Pyle to the layperson -- always sings "Back Home in Indiana" before the Indianapolis 500 gets underway. The talented singer/actor's contribution to the race is something of a tradition; Nabors has been singing the ditty since 1987, and with the exception of 2007, he's never missed a performance. Unfortunately, Nabors will miss this year's Indy 500, but that doesn't mean fans will have to do without.
Since he's currently scheduled for heart surgery later this month , a camera crew will pay a visit to the beloved 81 year-old thespians's Hawaiian home in order to snag a recording of his performance. Considering how much of a staple this song is to the race, it seems only logical to bring Nabors to the fans who adore him.
"He offered that," said IMS Productions spokesperson Doug Boles told USA Today. "You've got to remember that (the 500) is as much a highlight of his year as it is for the hundreds of thousands of fans who hear him sing." This is sure to make fans happy, as his performance of the song has become something of a tradition at the event.
Twitter fans are apparently big Jim Nabors fans, and a lot of them are a little disappointed that he won't be attending this year's Indianapolis 500. A small selection of their responses to the news can be found in the space provided below. Additionally, if you'd like to express your own heartfelt disappointment over Nabors' absence, do so in the comments section.
@IMS sad Jim Nabors won't be @ the 500 this year, glad you taped him singing Back home again in Indiana, it's my favorite part of pre race!
So Jim Nabors will be taped singing "Back Home Again." This had better not be step 1 towards creating Hologram Gomer.
#Indy500 this year. We wish you a speedy recovery, Get well soon!Sad news. Jim Nabors, we will miss you at the
If Jim Nabors can't make the 500, then play a recording of him singing Back Home Again in Indiana. That part of the day is not replaceable.
Get well soon, Jim Nabors. Won't be the same at the Brickyard without you there.