Actor Lyle Waggoner, who starred on ‘The Carol Burnett Show’ and in the ‘Wonder Woman’ series from the 1970s, died on March 17 aged 84.
Variety reported that Waggoner’s family released a statement that said the “loving husband, father, grandfather, entrepreneur, and actor passed away peacefully at home on March 17th at the age of 84 with his wife at his side. The cause of death was cancer.”
Born on April 13, 1935, Lyle Wesley Waggoner was raised in St. Louis, Missouri. He was a wrestler and a high jumper at Kirkwood High School in Missouri, and he briefly attended Washington University in St. Louis before enlisting in the US Army and serving as a radio operator.
“This 60s and 70s TV heartthrob was the proverbial tall, dark and classically handsome actor,” reads Waggoner’s IMDb profile. “Completing the solid package was a great, muscular build, smooth charm, an almost perfect set of teeth and a marvelously resonant voice.”
Waggoner’s breakthrough moment arrived when he became the announcer on ‘The Carol Burnett Show’ in the late 1960s. Some of his most notable sketches on the show included being interrogated by a Nazi and his finger puppet, playing a love-lorn man in ‘As The Stomach Turns’, playing a slave master in ‘The Oldest Man’, and an alien known as the Jolly Green Thing.
Waggoner guest-starred on many television series in the 1960s and 1970s — ‘Lost in Space’, ‘Marcus Welby, M.D.’, ‘The Barbara Eden Show’, and ‘Maude’ were a few of them. He was also famous for his role as Major Steve Trevor in ‘Wonder Woman’.
Waggoner said of Trevor in a 2011 interview, “He was a real gung-ho kind of guy. Steve tried his best, but he always seemed to get himself into hot water. Of course, he pretty much had to because it was Wonder Woman's job to rescue him. If there was a scene where he got the drop on the bad guys, sure enough, someone would end up slapping the gun out of his hand and turning the tables on him.”
He also appeared in ‘Charlie’s Angels’, ‘Happy Days’, ‘Mork & Mindy’, ‘The Golden Girls’, ‘Murder, She Wrote’, and even on ‘That ’70s Show’ as himself.
Of the many testimonials to his good looks was the fact that he was the first male centerfold in Playgirl magazine in 1973.
Waggoner is survived by his wife of 60 years, Sharon, his two sons, Jason and Beau, and his four beloved grandchildren.