Gentle humor and genuinely likable characters made Mayberry a beloved fixture on the TV landscape. A Top 10 hit throughout its eight-year run (it went out at No. 1), this low-key, down-home sitcom harkened back to a simpler time and place. Mayberry may be a state of mind, but the sunny optimism and simple virtues it represents have actually been set in stone--in a Raleigh, N.C., statue depicting Sheriff Andy Taylor and his son, Opie. `[The show's] central theme was love,' Griffith said.