Tyler photographer takes some of Larry Hagman's final photos
TYLER — We knew him first as the often-irritated astronaut Tony Nelson on "I Dream of Jeannie" in the '60s.
And before long, he took the role that would make the Texas native a Texas icon...J.R. Ewing on "Dallas."
Dr. Scott Lieberman is a Cardiologist in Tyler and a professional photographer.
Just a couple of weeks ago, he was one of the many East Texans that got to see Hagman in action at the Cowan Center on the UT Tyler campus in what turned out to be one of his last public appearances.
"I was there as a spectator but as I usually do at the receptions that were involved, I took several photographs of him for the file purposes and the archive purposes at the Associated Press," Lieberman said.
He says his photos are some of the most recent ones out there of Hagman.
The actor was diagnosed with what was essentially terminal cancer in the mid '90s, but after a successful liver transplant, he lived for nearly another 20 years.
Lieberman says he admires him for his voice in the medical community.
"He became an advocate for kidney donation, for organ donation and involved in efforts to get people to quit smoking. He was one of the leaders of the cold turkey smoke out," Lieberman said.
Dr. Lieberman is glad he finally got to meet the man he's admired for so long.
At the UT Tyler reception, he says it was clear how much East Texans loved his characters, his stories, and the man himself.
"He obviously was a little weaker than he had been but he really made an effort to sit there and pose and sign autographs for his fans and it was really...it was nice to see that," Lieberman said.
Larry Hagman was 81.