Larry Gelbart was the chief creative force behind the show for its first four years. It was Larry, working with Gene Reynolds, who came up with the idea of killing off Col. Henry Blake when McLean Stevenson the actor wanted out of his commitment. It was he and Gene who came up with four of the greatest TV characters of all-time: Corporal Klinger, the Section 8 candidate; Father Mulcahy, the spiritual leader of the camp; Col Sherman Potter, the Career Army in charge of the insane asylum; and BJ Hunnicutt, a family man surrounded by immorality.
Larry Gelbart died on September 11, 2009. If he was still living he would have been 85 years old.
Happy Birthday, Larry Gelbart!