Days Of Our Lives Character Deaths That Occurred After An Actor Death

Death is a big part of any TV drama, and soap operas are no different. "Days of Our Lives" fans have seen countless characters die over the show's 56-year run. 

Of course, sometimes, those characters make a shocking and dramatic return from the dead to keep the storyline interesting and bring back fan-favorite actors to the roles that viewers loved (via 


Sadly, not all characters can continue on in soap opera land. Sometimes, characters are just too important to recast, and, once the actor or actress who originated the roles dies, fans want a final send-off for the character as well.

While death is a part of life, it's also one thing that soaps are forced to deal with in reality — and for plot twists. However, it's always hard to truly say goodbye to a member of a show who has passed away, and "DOOL" has tried to give some of the most beloved characters and cast members sweet goodbyes over the years.

Tom Horton was killed off after Macdonald Carey's death in 1994

Macdonald Carey won over "Days of Our Lives" fans as Tom Horton. He was not only the patriarch of the Horton clan but also a well-respected doctor in the fictional town of Salem. 

Carey was cast on the show right from the beginning after having a career in movies (via The New York Times). The actor played the role of Tom Horton for three decades and worked up until his death in March 1994 due to lung cancer (via The Washington Post). 


After Carey's death, "DOOL" was forced to explain Tom's absence, and, just three months after the actor's real death, his character also died off-screen. 

However, Carey remains a huge part of the show to this day. Not only is his character mentioned frequently, but his voice can still be heard at the beginning of each episode saying the iconic phrase (via Herald-Mail Media), "Like sands through the hourglass, so are the days of our lives."

Fans said goodbye to Alice Horton a few months after Frances Reid's death

Frances Reid is one of the most beloved "Days of Our Lives" stars of all time. The actress originated the role of Alice Horton, the loving wife to Macdonald Carey's Dr. Tom Horton. 

She was the rock of the Horton family, becoming a go-to person for comfort and advice for her children and grandchildren over the years (via Soap Central). Alice was known for her strong morals and her delicious homemade donuts. 


Of course, the character also encountered plenty of drama in the decades that she starred in the NBC soap opera.

Reid last appeared on "DOOL" in 2007. Although Alice wasn't seen, the other characters often referenced her in the storylines. A few years later, in February 2010, Reid died at the age of 95 (via Entertainment Weekly). 

After her death, it wasn't long before the show decided to give Alice the same fate. A few months later, the citizens of Salem gathered to say goodbye to the Horton family matriarch while also paying tribute to Reid herself. Like her on-screen husband, Tom, Alice remains one of the backbones of "DOOL."

Caroline Brady was mourned eight months after actress Peggy McCay's death

Actress Peggy McCay joined the cast of "Days of Our Lives" as Caroline Brady in 1983. She portrayed the matriarch of the well-respected Brady family as the wife of Irish pub owner Shawn Brady and mother of Kayla, Kim, Roman, and Bo Brady (via Soap Central). 


Caroline had her share of drama over the years, such as revealing that Shawn wasn't really Bo's dad (Victor Kiriakis was). Caroline was at the center of many storylines over the decades, including one of her final plot lines, in which she developed Alzheimer's disease.

McCay's final appearance on "DOOL" was on Aug. 24, 2016 (via Deadline). However, the character of Caroline lived on as her children and grandchildren often mentioned her. The actress died at the age of 90 from natural causes in October 2018. 

Since the soap opera was filming eight months in advance, they began to figure out Caroline's passing quickly after McCay's death (via SheKnows Soaps). 

She was given her final send-off in June 2019, and the soap brought back characters to honor Caroline's death, including Sami, Lucas, Carrie, Belle, and Shawn, who were then away from Salem.


While it can be tricky to sensitively deal with the death of a cast member, over the years, "Days of Our Lives" has managed to give its beloved characters and actors the sweet final goodbyes that they deserve.