Gilligans Island professor Russell Johnson has died Flew 44 combat missions in WWII & awarded Purple Heart Today's professors don't compare
— LukeHandCool (@starrfin) January 16, 2014
They sure don’t.
“Gilligan’s Island” star Russell Johnson, aka The Professor, passed away early this morning. Many fans are paying tribute to him for his role on the beloved TV show, but there was so much more to him than that:
Watched every Gilligan's Island episode dozen times. Never knew Professor was a war hero. Typical Greatest Generation http://t.co/NoiUBRMSJD
— Gerry Callahan (@GerryCallahan) January 16, 2014
From The Wrap:
Born in rural northeastern Pennsylvania, Johnson graduated from a private boarding school for orphaned children before joining the Air Force, flying dozens of combat missions in World War II – including one that turned him into a real-life castaway in the Philippines in 1945. Johnson’s B-25 bomber was shot down by heavy flak; he broke both his ankles during the mission, and received the Purple Heart.
A true hero.
Russell Johnson.. not just a "Professor" on Gilligan's Island, but a B-25 Bombardier in WWII. 44 combat missions. RIP, Lieutenant.
— Sean Agnew (@seanagnew) January 16, 2014
Sad to hear death of Russell Johnson, Purple Heart recipient, "Professor" on #GilligansIsland
— Erik Griswold (@erik_griswold) January 16, 2014
"Professor" Russell Johnson flew on B-24s in WWII, got a purple heart, and paid for acting school with the GI Bill. http://t.co/O2sao5oxgO
— Drew Cline (@DrewHampshire) January 16, 2014
— Kim Brittain (@Billybeeswife) January 16, 2014
— SalenaZito (@SalenaZitoTrib) January 16, 2014
Goodbye and safe voyages to Russell Johnson, Gilligan's Island's Professor and badass WWII vet.
— rain (@rainbird23) January 16, 2014
Badass, indeed. RIP.