Jim Nabors
Jim Nabors, pictured second from the left, won't be attending this year's Indy 500. REUTERS

Jim Nabors, best known as Gomer Pyle, will miss this year's Indianapolis 500 due to a heart surgery later this month, but his presence will still be felt at the famous race.

Nabors has sung Back Home in Indiana before the race begins since 1987 and fans and race organizers alike didn't want the tradition to die. So even though Nabors won't be in attendance at the race, a recording of him will be played for his thousands of fans.

He offered that, IMS spokesman Doug Boles told USA Today about recording Nabors. You've got to remember that (the 500) is as much a highlight of his year as it is for the hundreds of thousands of fans who hear him sing.

USA Today reports that IMS Productions will fly out to Hawaii this week to record Nabors singing the song.

Hearing Nabors voice at the Indianapolis 500 will be a nice relief for his fans, especially after recent fake death reports. Apparently some fans confused the death of George Lindsey, who played Goober Pyle on The Andy Griffith Show, with Nabors' Gomer Pyle. Lindsey passed away on Sunday.

Despite the heart surgery in his future, it appears Nabors is healthy.