DARE COUNTY, NC-North Carolina native Andy Griffith, perhaps best known for playing Sheriff Andy Taylor and defense lawyer Ben Matlock, died Tuesday, according to news reports out of North Carolina.
WITN-TV says Griffith's close friend, former UNC President Bill Friday, confirmed the sad news.
Griffith passed away at his home on Roanoke Island at age 86, although Dare County authorities would only say that EMS crews were called to his home this morning.
Griffith, born in Mount Airy, also was a Grammy award-winning Southern gospel singer. In 2005, he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom.