Bozo the Clown Actor Larry Harmon Dies at 83
07/03/2008 AT 06:35 PM EDT
The actor died Thursday of congestive heart failure at his home, said his publicist, Jerry Digney.
"Bozo is a combination of the wonderful wisdom of the adult and the childlike ways in all of us," Harmon said in a 1996 interview of the character he was so famous for.
Harmon was not original Bozo, but portrayed the clown in many appearances – including at the Rose Parade in Pasadena in 1996 – and licensed the character to others.
The actor's wife of 29 years called her husband, "The love of my life."
"He was the most optimistic man I ever met," Susan Harmon said Thursday. "He always saw a bright side; he always had something good to say about everybody."
Harmon is also survived by his son, Jeff Harmon, and daughters Lori Harmon, Marci Breth-Carabet and Leslie Breth.