Loretta Swit Remembers Harry Morgan

The 2011 Year-End Special issue of Entertainment Weekly included a lengthy section on “The Late Greats,” in which actors, musicians, directors and others who died during 2011 were remembered by those closest to them. One of the celebrities commemorated was Harry Morgan, by Loretta Swit. If you don’t have a copy of the actual magazine, a slideshow is available at EW.com. Here’s what Swit had to say about Morgan, who passed away on December 7th:

Harry…my very dear, close friend…the best colleague you could hope for…an accomplished, committed actor, humble to the extreme, possessed of a brilliant mind, a dazzling sense of humor coupled with impeccable timing… the quintessential colleague, able to lift your spirits with laughter during those long, late hours on the set…often my ­father figure…ever a mensch… always my ”comrade-in-arms.”…

How blessed I am to have had you in my life all this time.

And now, I find myself using the words from the ”Goodbye, Farewell, and Amen” finale of M*A*S*H. Harry and I needed more than just a few takes during our goodbye scene. We could not stop the tears. ”Goodbye, Margaret,” Colonel Potter says. ”Don’t forget to have a happy life.” Margaret says: ”You dear, sweet man…I’ll never forget you.”

Even more so from me, dear Harry, dear friend. I take comfort in knowing that you knew how very much I loved you.

2 Comments

  • Harry Morgan and Loretta Swit had such wonderful chemistry with each other, you could just tell that Margaret immediately had deep and sincere respect for Potter as a commander… far cry from her constantly threatening to go over Henry’s head because of how inept and incompetent he was as a commander. I always get a chuckle out of the scene from “Hot Lips is Back in Town” (7×20) when Margaret comes into Potter’s tent in the middle of the night excited about her future and she greets him with a kiss on the ear, much to his surprise, and tells him goodbye with another kiss on the ear, again to his surprise, lol. Harry mentions in The Complete Book of M*A*S*H that Loretta was very much like a daughter to him, and that she and his wife mingled a lot on weekends… it’s nice that the actors on these shows can develop a real friendship with each other off-camera, because you hear all to often the stories about actors who hated each other’s guts and never got along (like Bob Crane and Richard Dawson, or Vivian Vance and William Frawley, etc).

  • Chai says:

    You always hear stories of how cast members are close on set but then drift apart after the show is complete. M*A*S*H is one of those unique shows where the cast members are still incredibly close and speak highly of each other and are so supportive.

    Loretta’s words show just how adored Harry was by the cast and how much he will be missed, not only by his cast mates, but all of us devotees as well.

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