It saddens me to write a man I so loved and admired as a kid, Dan Haggerty (1941-2016), has passed.
The man we adored as the gentle but strong Grizzly Adams and who spoke to the animals and was our TV connection to the land, nature and the Earth is gone.
Haggerty so embodied the role of Grizzly Adams that his role spoke so powerfully to us as children. It seemed like The Life And Times Of Grizzly Adams (1977-1978, 1974 pilot film and 1982 film) was on for many seasons yet it lasted just over a year, for two seasons and 38 episodes.
Nevertheless the beloved figure of Grizzly Adams endured and was remembered as so many series from the 1970s and 1960s have been remembered that were the recipients of ephemeral runs like Space:1999 (1975-1977; 2 seasons and 48 episodes), Battlestar Galactica (1978-1979; 1 season and 24 episodes) and Thunderbirds (1965-1966; 2 seasons and 32 episodes) to name a few.
As children we loved the stories of Mad Jack, Nakoma, Mad Jack's ornery mule Number 7, big Ben the bear and others who surrounded the respectful, shepherding eye, kindness and love of Dan Haggerty's Grizzly Adams. It's another loss in what is turning out to be an awfully rough start to 2016.
My hope is to offer another tribute to this classic character and Haggerty in the near future in honor of the man. Until then, here is an earlier tribute to the series that was led by Haggerty. I genuinely enjoyed penning this back in 2013.
Mr. Haggerty you gave this boy (still at heart) many great memories and offered many honest, kind and simple lessons that influenced who I would become and enhanced all of the wonderful lessons given me by my parents and grandmother. Thank you.
Dan Haggerty was 74.