Heartbreaking Farewells: Remembering the Daytime Vets Who Were Taken From Us in 2022
With each year come more daytime losses, yet their memories live on in the roles they left behind.
It’s a new year and though we hope everyone creates special memories with those they love throughout 2023, we wanted to take this moment to reflect back on some of the beloved soap stars we lost in 2022, ones that left their mark on the hearts of daytime fans forever…
The year started out with the loss of soap hopper Joan Copeland, who began her daytime career in 1960 as Maggie on Love of Life and turned up on numerous other soaps until her last daytime appearance in 1995 as Selma on One Life to Live. We then said goodbye to The Edge of Night’s Donald May (Adam) that same month.
February brought the devastating news that 43-year-old General Hospital alum Lindsey Pearlman (ex-Maggie) had been found near Runyon Canyon Park in Los Angeles, California after having been reported missing two days prior. Furthermore, former The Young and the Restless actress Sally Kellerman (ex-Constance), who shared scenes with Justin Hartley’s Adam, passed away at the end of the month due to complications from dementia.
March and April brought more sad passings and fans grieved upon hearing that As the World Turns fave Kathryn Hays (Kim) had died at the age of 87. The heartbreak continued as the husband of Passions alum Jossara Jinaro (Rae) reported that his wife had “bravely fought cancer” but the cancer ultimately claimed her life at just 48 years old.
More: Photos, Passions through the years
“Jossara was an amazing wife, mother, artist, and friend. She had the most beautiful, kind soul and wouldn’t take no for an answer,” stated Jinaro’s husband Matt Bogado. “Even in her last moments, she was still fighting. She is now resting in peace and will be remembered forever.”
And on the first day of May, Guiding Light and One Life to Live vet Jerry verDorn (Ross; Clint) passed away after a months-long battle with cancer, as did Charles Siebert, who succumbed to pneumonia related to the coronavirus.
“I’m heartbroken to hear of Jerry verDorn’s passing,” expressed Melissa Archer, who played verDorn’s onscreen daughter Natalie. “I have so many wonderful things to say about this man, but I’ll try to keep it brief. I had the honor of playing his daughter on One Life to Live. He was genuine from start to finish. A giving actor, a caring coworker, funny, talented and full of smiles.”
More: Photos, One Life to Live through the years
Others followed and another young death crushed the hearts of fans, as As the World Turns’ Marnie Schulenburg (Alison) lost a courageous battle with metastatic breast cancer just four days before her 38th birthday.
Hollywood also mourned some well-known stars that had roles on soaps, including Goodfellas and Field of Dreams actor Ray Liotta, legendary Star Trek vet Nichelle Nichols and Emmy winner Anne Heche, who passed away on August 12, at 53, following a devastating car accident.
The Bold and the Beautiful alum Rena Sofer (ex-Quinn) once auditioned alongside Heche for Another World and of the memory, she recalled, “Anne shined so brightly she got a double role as the twins Vicky and Marley… I was not friends with Anne but I remember watching her work and being in awe of her talent.”
And Another World, One Life to Live alum Robyn Griggs (Maggie; Stephanie) died just one day after Heche as a result of cervical cancer. She was just 49 years old.
Soap writer Michael Malone, who created memorable One Life to Live characters such as Todd Manning, Billy Douglas and Luna Moody, died in August followed by not only a Beverly Hills, 90210 fave who started out on soaps but a well-known horror writer who starred in scenes with and was a dear friend of General Hospital’s Michael Easton (Finn).
Of the loss, Easton shared, “I’m still numb and I wish I had the words to properly express what he meant to me.”
Plus, the man who spent 30 years voicing the role of Batman, as well as played on two soaps, was mourned world-wide in November following a short-term battle with cancer.
And on Friday, November 11, daytime was rocked to its core after actress Jennifer Aniston announced the death of her father, beloved Days of Our Lives actor John Aniston. Stars from all soaps came out to pay tribute to the man who played Salem’s Victor Kiriakis for over 50 years, and Soaps.com collected various messages from Aniston’s daytime peers and shared a special photo gallery — everyone from Days of Our Lives stars like Wally Kurth, who played his onscreen nephew Justin, to General Hospital and Young & Restless actresses who had the honor of working with him.
“Sweet papa…” his daughter Jennifer began. “You were one of the most beautiful humans I ever knew. I am so grateful that you went soaring into the heavens in peace — and without pain… I’ll love you till the end of time.”
Then December came and daytime was shattered to learn that General Hospital‘s Sonya Eddy (Epiphany) passed away at 55. Actress Octavia Spencer posted the heartbreaking news on her official Instagram. “My friend Sonya Eddy passed away last night,” she stated. “The world lost another creative angel. Her legions of General Hospital fans will miss her.” She then sent her condolences not only to Eddy’s loved ones and friends but to her fans as well.
However, amid all of the sad reports, we were able to look back on the daytime stars’ many accomplishments and the memories they created through their characters… and in knowing they would always live on through their soap personalities was a comfort to many.
We invite you to join us as we take a closer look by paying tribute to and honoring the lives of over 25 stars and their daytime careers in our photo gallery below.