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Tom Lester Dies: ‘Green Acres’ Actor Was 81

Tom Lester Dies: ‘Green Acres’ Actor Was 81

Tom Lester, the actor who played the guileless, brighter-than-he-seemed farmhand Eb Dawson on CBS’ 1960s sitcom Green Acres, died Monday in Nashville of complications from Parkinson’s disease, his family announced. He was 81.

Born Thomas William Lester in Laurel, Mississippi, Lester set out for Hollywood after graduating from the University of Mississippi. He studied acting with teacher and Petticoat Junction actress Lurene Tuttle, soon coming to the attention of the show’s creator Paul Henning, who was casting another rural comedy within The Beverly Hillbillies-Petticoat Junction universe.

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The show was Green Acres, an alternately hokey and surreal comedy starring Eddie Albert and Eva Gabor as a sophisticated

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