Denise Alexander is paying tribute to General Hospital co-star Jacklyn Zeman, who died unexpectedly on May 9 after a brief battle with cancer. Zeman passed away less than two weeks after her final episode of General Hospital, which aired on April 27, and just three days after turning 70.
“Oh girl, I keep hearing your voice and laughing, and I just can’t stop sobbing. Your sweetness, humor, cleverness, and exquisite goodness are qualities that I have always admired and treasured. The best hugs, as well. I’ll adore you forever. Denise,” Alexander penned in a brief letter that was made public for the first time on May 15 by Soap Hub.
In 1973, Denise Alexander joined the cast of General Hospital as Dr. Lesley Webber. As Nurse Bobbie Spencer, Jacklyn Zeman didn’t join the cast until 1977. Denise and Jacklyn grew close both on and off camera before Jacklyn’s terrible death on May 9.
Not every member of Alexander’s previous cast remembered Zeman. Anthony Geary, who played the show’s Luke Spencer, provided TVLine with an exclusive message on May 11, a few days after the celebrity’s demise. Zeman’s character had Geary’s character as a big brother for more than 40 years.
“I never once overheard her speak ill of any actor, crew member, or colleague. In reality, Jackie never once spoke ill of someone in front of me. I’ve discovered this quality to be incredibly uncommon in a highly competitive industry where ego, feelings, and emotions are the lifeblood,” Geary wrote.
Frank Valentini, a soap opera executive producer, first revealed her passing. She was “a bright light and true professional that brought so much positive energy to work,” he said, adding that while she would be sorely missed, her upbeat attitude will never be forgotten.
As word of the late actor’s passing spread online, condolences to Jacklyn Zeman began to pour in large numbers. Her General Hospital TV family mourned the 70-year-old with praise for her generosity and upbeat outlook, even on her worst days. For all time, her legacy will be cherished.
“I’m very happy that I got to spend so much time with this lovely woman. Jackie had the best stories to tell, a contagious spirit, and such a remarkable life. She enjoyed working on General Hospital,” Laura Wright, who portrayed Carly Spencer, the character who was Zeman’s daughter in the serial show, stated on Instagram.
Wright took over Carly’s role before Tamara Braun, who played Carly, joined Tamara Braun in praising Zeman. “I am at a loss for words. This hurts and disturbs me beyond words. I wish to hug you. Join us in our laughter. Tell stories. Talk real talk because that’s what we did,” Braun urged in her own Instagram tribute.
“Remembering Sarah Joy Brown, the first actress to play Zeman’s daughter on General Hospital, is important. Beautiful both inside and out, queen. Everyone who cared for her is saddened, I know that. My love to her girls, family, work fam, and admirers,” she wrote in a Twitter tribute, attributing her success to Zeman.