‘Magnum, P.I.’ actor Hillerman dies at 84
LOS ANGELES» John Hill erman, who played stuffed-shirt Higgins to Tom Selleck’s freewheeling detective Thomas Magnumin the 1980s TV series “Magnum, P. I .” has died, his nephew said Thursday. Hillerman was 84.
Hillerman, who had been in declining health, died Thursday at his home in Houston, nephew Chris Tritico said. The cause of death was not immediately known, he said.
Besides playing manager of the Hawaiian estate that Magnum used as home base, Hillerman was known for his 1970s roles as arrogant radio show detective Simon Brimmer on the “Ellery Queen” series and the difficult boss on the sitcom “One Day at a Time.”
When Hillerman decided to retire about 17 years ago, the actor born in Denison, Texas, returned to his native state, his nephew said.
Hillerman used something closer to his own voice in Mel Brooks’ “Blazing Saddles,” playing Howard Johnson, one of the comic Western’s many Johnsons..