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By MARTHA WAGGONER
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Andy Griffith, who made homespun Southern wisdom his trademark as the wise sheriff in ‘‘The Andy Griffith Show’’ and the rumpled defense lawyer in ‘‘Matlock,’’ died Tuesday. He was 86.
Griffith died about 7 a.m. at his coastal home, Dare County Sheriff Doug Doughtie said in a statement.
‘‘Mr. Griffith passed away this morning at his home peacefully and has been laid to rest on his beloved Roanoke Island,’’ Doughtie told The Associated Press, reading from a family statement.
The family will release further information, the sheriff said.
He had suffered a heart attack and underwent quadruple bypass surgery in 2000.
Griffith’s career spanned more than a half-century on stage, film and television, but he would always be best known as Sheriff Andy Taylor in the television show set in a North Carolina town not too different from Griffith’s own hometown of Mount Airy, N.C.