‘The Andy Griffith Show’: Don Knotts Had His Wife and Daughter in ‘Fits of Laughter’ on His Deathbed

by Clayton Edwards

“The Andy Griffith Show” is still one of the best shows to ever air on television. The writing, comedic timing, and characters came together to create something magical. As a result, viewers have been going back to Mayberry for decades. Don Knotts and Andy Griffith made a great comedic team. They were at the center of what made the show great.

The addition of Don Knotts in the second episode of the show is a major contributing factor to what made it a hit, according to Andy Griffith. Knotts was naturally funny and it came out in his acting. His line delivery, timing, and facial expressions have put audiences in stitches for decades. He kept his sense of humor until the very end.

Don Knotts Wasn’t Just Hilarious on ‘The Andy Griffith Show’

Don Knotts was cracking jokes literally until the day he died. According to his daughter, Karen Knotts, he kept her and his wife laughing even on his death bed. She sat down with “Closer Weekly” back in 2018 to talk about her father, “The Andy Griffith Show,” and more.

During that interview, Karen talked about standing at her father’s bedside in his final days. For most people, it would have been a sad and solemn time. It would have been a time of tearful reflection, promises, and prayers. Don Knotts was having none of that, though. The “Andy Griffith Show,” star did what came naturally to him. He made his family laugh. When things got too heavy, he would do or say something that would send his wife and daughter into fits of laughter.

Karen said that she had to leave the room at one point because she was laughing so hard. About this, she said, “I thought to myself, ‘I don’t want to be standing there in front of this man, my dearly beloved father, who’s dying, and laughing.’” She later regretted the decision. When she told television director Howard Storm the story, he told her she should have stayed and laughed. “That’s what comedians live for,” he assured her.

Karen Knotts said that her father never had to try to be funny. Looking back at her father’s natural comedic ability she said, “Being funny was just something so natural. It was a gene or… well, I don’t know what it was, except that it was just an out-of-control natural funniness.”

We can count ourselves lucky that Don Knotts shared his humor with the world. They just don’t make funny men like Knotts anymore.