Soap Legend Roscoe Born Dead at 69, Family Reveals Cause of Death
Image: Brian Lowe/JPI
Daytime Emmy nominated actor remembered for numerous soap opera roles.
Updated March 9: Soaps.com has learned that the cause of death of veteran soap opera actor Roscoe Born was suicide. His family took to Facebook to make the announcement, as well as reveal the actor struggled with bipolar disorder. “It is with heavy hearts that we confirm the death of our father and brother Roscoe Born. The gleaming charisma and creativity that shone through his onscreen performances, fueled his robust songwriting repertoire, and charmed all those around him were matched by a darkness in his life. Roscoe has long struggled with bipolar disorder, a shadow that he succumbed to when he took his own life on Tuesday March 3, 2020. We are grateful for the outpouring of kind words and memories. We only wish that Roscoe could have seen how much people still carry his daytime villains in their hearts. May his death remind us of the importance of opening up conversations around mental illness. May those who need help seek it. May those who seek help receive it. And may it serve them.”
On March 6 Soaps.com reported that veteran soap opera actor Roscoe Born has died at the age of 69 on Tuesday March 3. The news was revealed on his Facebook page by Deanna Lynne, his friend and business partner. Lynne wrote, “It is with a heavy heart that I share the news of Roscoe Born’s passing. He was an incredibly talented actor and songwriter. Many who knew him know how dedicated he was to social and political causes. He will be missed forever.”
Born was born as Roscoe Conklin Born on November 24, 1950 in Topeka, Kansas. His family moved to Maryland when he was very young and he graduated from Albert Einstein High School. He went on to attend both Tulane University in Louisiana and Boston University. He was married to Roberta Weiss (Santa Barbara, Flame Beaufort) from 1994 until 2004, and has a daughter Alberta Mary from the marriage. He was also previously married to Randall Edwards (Ryan’s Hope, Delia Ryan) from 1985 to 1990, and Adrienne Hampton from 1976 until 1982.
Born is probably best known for playing the villain Mitch Laurence on One Life to Live from 1985 until 2012. His first role in daytime was as Joe Novak on Ryan’s Hope from 1980 until 1988. He also was known for playing Robert Barr and Quinn Armitage on Santa Barbara from 1989 until 1991, Nick Rivers on The City from 1995 until 1997, and frequently appeared as the treacherous Trent Robbins on Days of our Lives from 2001 till 2008. He also played the role of the terrible Tom Fisher on Young and the Restless from 2005 until 2009.
Born had smaller roles on other soap operas. He played Peter Vreeland in an episode of Guiding Light in 2001, Detective Adamski for three episodes of As the World Turns in 2001, and a warden for several episodes of Passions in 2007. Outside of daytime he made guest appearances on Murder She Wrote, The Incredible Hulk, The Rockford Files, Midnight Caller and Family Passions. In 1989, he had a featured role in the film Powwow Highway.
Born was a talented singer and stage actor. He worked in the regional theater on the east and west coast, and Off-Broadway in New York. In February 2017, Born released two singles on iTunes through Chowderhead Records, Let the Road Lead and Crazy is as Crazy Does. He previously posted his original songs on YouTube, which include Bob Dylan’s Pepsi Blues, Blue State Mind, Red State Soul, Soldier On, and If It Don’t Stink, Don’t Stir the Pot.
Born is survived by his daughter. Soaps.com sends condolences to his friends and family, and invites readers to browse through a collection of photos of other daytime stars we’ve lost this year.