The Young And The Restless: The Truth About Neil And Drucilla's Relationship

Victoria Rowell played the role of Drucilla Winters on "The Young and the Restless" from 1990 to 2007. At that time, she already had several decades of acting success under her belt, per IMDb. The character Drucilla was introduced to the soap with a rags-to-riches story as a former runaway teen turned model, and she eventually found love with businessman Neil Winters (via Soap Central). Neil was portrayed by the esteemed actor Kristoff St. John, who starred in the role from 1991 until his death in 2019. His character was brought onto the scene as an executive trainee at Jabot Cosmetics and was eager to work his way up the corporate ladder.

It didn't take long for Neil and Drucilla to find themselves embroiled in a love quadrangle along with her sister Olivia Barber (Tonya Lee Williams) and Nathan Hastings (then Randy Brooks). Neil and Dru attempted to break up Olivia and Nathan's relationship so they could have each partner for themselves — but in the process, they ended up falling in love with each other. By 1993, the couple had wed.

Neil and Drucilla's first attempt at marriage failed

The first year of marriage seemed to be going well for Neil and Drucilla Winters — until Neil's brother Malcolm Winters showed up in town, giving popular actor Shemar Moore his first big break in Hollywood. Dru and Malcolm grew close, and he developed a romantic interest in his brother's wife. One night while Dru was under the influence of cold medication, the two slept together (although she believed him to be Neil at the time), according to the South Florida Sun Sentinel. Not long afterward, Dru discovered she was pregnant, but opted not to find out the paternity of her baby and just raise the child with her husband.

In 1995, Drucilla gave birth to her daughter Lily Winters, but the new baby did nothing to hide the underlying issues present in her marriage to Neil. Dru had found some success as a model and was interested in pursuing her career further (via Soaps in Depth). However, Neil felt that he should be the breadwinner in the family and she should stay at home with their daughter. The couple were not able to reconcile their differences and eventually divorced in 1997. By 2000, Drucilla decided to relocate with Lily to Europe where she would have better modeling opportunities.

Neil and Drucilla later decided to remarry

By 2002, Drucilla Winters had returned to Genoa City with her now teenage daughter Lily Winters (who'd experienced a case of soap opera rapid-aging syndrome). The mom was hoping her ex-husband Neil Winters would be able to help her regain control over their increasingly rebellious daughter (via Soap Central). However, it soon became clear that Neil was struggling with his own issues, particularly drinking. Dru and Lily were able to help Neil get sober and in the process, the two parents began to have feelings for one another again. By 2003, the couple was remarried and Neil and Drucilla adopted troubled teen Devon Hamilton (Bryton James).

Things took a turn for the worst in the Winter family when Malcolm reappeared in town demanding a paternity test for Lily. Dru complied and the two discovered that Lily was, in fact, Malcolm's biological daughter (via SoapHub). They tried to keep the girl's paternity a secret but Neil and Lily eventually found out and were devastated by the betrayal.

Neil and Drucilla were torn apart again in the end

After Neil Winters discovered his wife and brother had been lying to him for so many years, Neil separated from Drucilla (via Soaps in Depth). He then began flirting with his co-worker Carmen Mesta (Marisa Ramirez), though their relationship never turned physical. However, Drucilla believed they were having a full-blown affair and lashed out by going on a public drunken tirade and cutting up a bunch of the other woman's expensive clothing.

Carmen got a restraining order against Drucilla, but the scorned wife continued to break it, per Soap Central. Eventually, Dru physically attacked Carmen, and Phyllis Summers (Michelle Stafford) caught the whole thing on tape. Dru was then fired from Newman Enterprises, arrested, and sentenced to community service and court-ordered counseling. Afterward, Neil made the decision to break off his burgeoning relationship with Carmen to stand by his wife.

Drucilla and Neil were able to reconcile, but things turned sour once again when Carmen was found murdered. Dru began to see visions of the other woman around town, causing her to be institutionalized. Although it was eventually revealed the woman in Dru's visions was Carmen's look-alike cousin Ines Vargas, who was intentionally trying to haunt her (via Soaps). Following the intense buildup of drama, what happened to Drucilla? Things seemed to be looking up for the Winters — until a fateful day in April 2007. Drucilla was on site for a cliff-side photo shoot and unexpectedly fell to her death.

Victoria Rowell returned to "The Young and the Restless" in 2019 for a tribute to her late co-star and on-screen love, Kristoff St. John, although she did not reprise her character.