April 13, 1923-September 25, 2005
Don Adams, born Donald James Yarmy, was a well-known comedian who starred in the TV series Get Smart as a bumbling spy, and as the voice of Inspector Gadget and Tennessee Tuxedo.
Don Adams served in the US Marines in World War II, and later got a career as a standup comedian. He married Adelaide Adams, a notable singer, and adopted her stage surname. He later claimed he changed his last name from Yarmy to Adams because he was sick of being called last in auditions, which went in alphabetical order. In 1948, he won on a TV show called Original Amateur Hour in 1948. From there he began his TV career, on shows like "The Perry Como Show."
Adams hit it big when he got the lead part in the show Get Smart, playing Maxwell Smart, Agent 86. He would bumble every assignment and just played an incompetent spy, to hilarious effect. He wound up winning 3 Emmy awards for his acting on the show. His salary was $4000 per week plus royalties.
Adams also played the voice of Tennessee Tuxedo, a children's cartoon. He later appeared on The Love Boat, playing Donald Richardson. He also did numerous appearances on other shows, like Fantasy Island and Sonny and Cher.
Adams later became known to the 80's generation as the voice of Inspector Gadget, where once again he played a stupid detective who had an assortment of bionic gadgets and contraptions. (Think he was typecast?) For that he made $3500 per episode. "Wowsers!"
Info courtesy IMDB