Our dear friend, JeffersonÂ the movin’ on up Â Dry Cleaner, and Deacon Frye on âAmenâ, Sherman Hemsley has passed away in his El Paso home at the age of 74.Â The beloved actorÂ brought to our lives Â Jefferson, neighbor of Archie and Edith Bunker on the controversialÂ and popular situation comedy, âAll in the Familyâ, in those days of change when many Americans were forming opinions onÂ matters racial that they would keep for life.
âAll in the Familyâ was among the first sit-coms to produce a spin-off, and âThe Jeffersonsâ came into being. That was the immensely successful story of brisk and lovable George Jefferson, a successful New York City Dry-Cleaner, Â his tolerant wife Louise, and their patient and wise-cracking housekeeper, Florence. Her asides were a joy and a pleasure.
Hemsley went on to bring life to Deacon Frye of the First Community church of Philadelphia (Mr. Hemsleyâs actual home town). His daughter was a most memorable character, 36 year old Thelma Frye, portrayed by Anna Maria Horsford. Thelma was the light of life of The Reverend Reuben Gregory, played by Clifton Davis.
Sherman Hemsley was socially active, a part time musician and friend to musical greats such as Dizzy Gillespie, and stars including Bill Cosby. Mr. Hemsley had neither wife nor children.