Harry Morgan, 'M*A*S*H*'s' Col. Potter, dead at 96
To an earlier generation, Morgan was also known as Officer Bill Gannon, the partner of Jack Webb's Sgt. Joe Friday on TV's "Dragnet." He was also a regular on a slew of shows from the 1950s through the '70s, including "Pete and Gladys," "The Richard Boone Show" and "Kentucky Jones." He played "M*A*S*H*'s" Col. Potter from 1975 to 1983 when the show went off the air. He was a replacement for McLean Stevenson, who had originated the role.
"He was firm. He was a good officer and he had a good sense of humor," said Morgan of his Potter character in an interview cited by the New York Times. "I think it's the best part I ever had."
He won a best supporting actor Emmy for the role in 1980.
"M*A*S*H*" fans will remember Potter as a somewhat wry, ironic commanding officer who sought relaxation by painting and talking about his horse, Sophie. In real life, Morgan raised quarter horses on a Santa Rosa, Calif., ranch.
The son of Norwegian immigrants, Morgan discovered an affinity for acting when while taking debate classes for his pre-law major at the University of Chicago.