Wayne Rogers, Trapper John of ‘M.A.S.H,’ Dies at 82

The comedian played a sardonic, martini-drinking surgeon on the wartime comedy show

Wayne Rogers, who played a sardonic, martini-drinking surgeon on the beloved comedy sitcom “M*A*S*H,” has died. He was 82.

Rogers played Dr.  Trapper John McIntyre on “M*A*S*H,” one of the most popular television shows of the 1970s and a send-up of America’s foray into Vietnam. (Clarification: the show was set in Korea, but widely viewed as a commentary on America’s misadventure in the Vietnam War.)

He was partnered with Hawkeye Pierce, played by Alan Alda, and the two would trade barbed remarks throughout surgery in the war zone.

Rogers’ publicist said the actor died Thursday in Los Angeles of complications from pneumonia.

Rogers was on the show for just the first three of its 11 seasons. He succeeded Elliot Gould, who played the character in the 1970 Robert Altman film, “M*A*S*H.”

Rogers continued his career after the show with roles in television and on film, including three seasons in another CBS medical comedy, “House Calls,” but his most indelible character remained Trapper John.

He was born in Alabama and was a graduate of Princeton University. Rogers was married to actress Mitzi McWhorter in 1960 and divorced in 1983. He was married to his second wife, Amy Hirsh, from 1988 until his death.

Editor’s Note: This article was amended to clarify that the show was a commentary on the Vietnam War, but set in Korea.

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