James Wall, the pioneering vaudevillian actor famed for playing Captain Kangaroo's pal Mr. Baxter, died Wednesday at the age of 92.
Wall passed away after a short illness, according to CBS News, for whom he worked for more than 50 years as stage manager on programs such as 60 Minutes, Face the Nation, the U.S. Open Tennis Championships and the classic kids series Captain Kangaroo.
But Wall is best remembered as the Captain's kindly neighbor, Mr. Baxter. After joining the production crew in 1962, the entertainer successfully lobbied his bosses to bring him aboard in a recurring role as the show's first African-American character. He appeared in the show from 1968 to 1978, including costarring with the Captain and Mr. Greenjeans in the serialized segment "The Missing Paint Mystery."
After his decade-long stint on Captain Kangaroo, Wall continued working on various CBS broadcasts until his semi-retirement in 1988, but continued to fill in on an occasional basis. In 2008, he was honored by CBS sportscasters Dick Enberg and John McEnroe for his 41 years working the U.S. Open.
He is survived by his wife of 58 years, Dolly.
Rest in peace, Mr. Baxter.