Howard Hesseman, better known to his fans of a certain age as Doctor Johnny Fever, of WKRP in Cincinnati, has passed on to the great beyond.…

(CNN)Actor Howard Hesseman, best known as the hard-rocking disc jockey Dr. Johnny Fever on the sitcom “WKRP in Cincinnati” has died, according to his manager, Robbie Kass.

Hesseman died Saturday afternoon from complications related to colon surgery, Kass told CNN. Hesseman was 81.
In addition to earning two Emmy nominations for his role on “WKRP,” Hesseman also appeared on “Head of the Class” and “One Day at a Time,” along with guest appearances on “That 70’s Show,” among others. The Oregon native also hosted “Saturday Night Live” several times.
Sure there are many great memories of WKRP (I never really got into “Head of the Class” as I was a bit beyond that age of school, but I remember WKRP from the first episode through the last as a fun, often surprising and wonderful, warm group of characters.  I was always a fan of Howard Hesseman as “The Doctor”, Gordon Jump Arthur Carlson as the station owner’s son and theoretical boss, Gary Sandy as Andy Travis, the smart and personable program manager brought in to change the format, Tim Reid as the smooth night-time DJ Venus Flytrap, Lonnie Anderson as the beautiful and clever (witty, etc) receptionist Jennifer Marlowe, plus Jan Smithers (Bailey Quarters) singing N-E-S-T-L-E-S’ jingle song while high on brownies, Richard Sanders (Les Nessman) with the incomparable Turkey drop, Frank Bonner (Herb Tarlek) with his white shoes and his wife Lucille — what a great ensemble cast.

I hadn’t seen anyone else mention that the good Doctor has died.  I hope he is now finding out that “there is a Rock and Roll Heaven, you know they have a helluva band.”  Rest easy, Mr. Hesseman.


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Who was your favorite character on WKRP?

Doctor Johnny Fever
364 votes
Venus Flytrap
50 votes
Andy Travis
24 votes
Gordon Carlson
14 votes
Herb Tarlek
31 votes
Less Nessman
184 votes
Bailey Quarters
192 votes
Jennifer Marlowe
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I never watched the show
40 votes
Multiple people (below)
163 votes
I’d rather eat pie
8 votes

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