Sherman Hemsley, who played the brash George Jefferson on “All in the Family” and “The Jeffersons,” died Tuesday at age 74, his booking agent said.
Hemsley played Jefferson, a wisecracking owner of a dry cleaners, on “All In the Family” from 1973 until 1975, when the spinoff “The Jeffersons” began an 11-season run.
“I am shocked, and thought Sherman was doing very well,” said Marla Gibb, who played the feisty maid Florence Johnston on the “The Jeffersons.” “I am saddened to hear that Sherman has made his transition. We were trying to come up with a new show that we could participate in, but of course, that cannot happen now.
“Sherman was one of the most generous co-stars I have ever worked with. He happily set me up so that I could slam him, and I did the same for him. I shall miss him deeply.”
Hemsley also played Deacon Ernest Frye in the sitcom “Amen.”