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Soap Vet Roscoe Born Dies At 69; Former Co-Stars Mourn His Passing

Photo: JPI

The soap world has been deeply affected and saddened with the heartbreaking news this afternoon on the passing of Roscoe Born.  He died at the age of 69 on Tuesday, March 3rd.

There was no one quite like him in the daytime soap genre.  A respected actor, who brought villainy to new heights in his various memorable roles.

His longtime friend  Denna Lynne and business partner in Born Roscoe Songs took to Facebook to share the news of the loss of this actor and songwriter.  “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.”

When you think of the some of the most devious characters on daytime ; Born has played them.  Who can forget One Life to Live’s Mitch Laurence, Y&R’s Terrible Tom Fisher, and DAYS’ Trent Robbins.

Roscoe got his soap start on Ryan’s Hope as Joe Novak in 1981, he left the series in 1983 and two years later married his former co-star, Randall Edwards (Ex-Delia), but they divorced two years later.

Throughout his daytime career, Born appeared in numerous soaps including: Santa Barbara (as Robert Barr and Quinn Armitage where he received a Daytime Emmy nomination), All My Children, The City, Guiding Light, Passions and As the World Turns.

Roscoe was born in Topeka, Kansas, 1981 playing good-hearted gangster Joe Novak, the love interest of the Ryan clan’s rebellious Siobhan Ryan. He left the series in 1983, two years later marrying his Ryan’s co-star Randall Edwards (the show’s trouble-making Delia). They divorced in 1990.

The actor is survived by his daughter with Roberta Weiss (Ex-Santa Barbara) named Alberta, 22.

Taking to social media to share their grief at the news of Roscoe’s passing were Melissa Archer (Ex-Natalie, OLTL), Greg Rikaart (Kevin, Y&R), Marg Helgenberger (Ex-Siobhan, Ryan’s Hope) and Andrea Evans (Ex-Tina, OLTL), Bree Williamson (Ex-Jessica, OLTL) plus former OLTL head writer, and now DAYS head scribe, Ron Carlivati.

Share your remembrances, condolences and your favorite role of Roscoe Born’s in the comment section below.

Leave a comment | 13 Comments


  1. boes

    March 6, 2020 at 8:30 pm

    He was such a marvelous actor, an incredibly unsettling villian but also could play a good guy with such depth. Every show he worked on, he elevated.

    What a talent, gone too soon.

  2. Jimh

    March 6, 2020 at 8:42 pm

    One day after my birthday…how sad to loose another great…had seen him in all those roles!!!!

  3. Llanviewer717

    March 6, 2020 at 10:00 pm

    I am so terribly sadden to hear this news. Roscoe Born was an amazing actor. I enjoyed him so much in Ryan’s Hope, Paper Dolls, All My Children and of course as the unforgettably diabolical Mitch Laurence on One Life to Live. I remember a scene from his first stint on OLTL. Mitch was packing to leave town after recking havoc in Llanview. As he packed, Mitch sang to himself “I’m bad to the bone. I’m bad to the bone.” Mitch Laurence was a classic villain, absolutely self-centered and without any conscience whatsoever. Roscoe Born played him beautifully.

    Thank you Mr. Born for sharing your wonderful talent with all of us. Rest in peace.

  4. Violet Lemm

    March 7, 2020 at 1:04 am

    Oh, so sorry to hear of His passing. Loved him as Terrible Tom on Y&R and my favorite role of Robert Barr on Santa Barbara. That man could sure play the villain.

  5. Jennifer W.

    March 7, 2020 at 5:52 am

    I was so saddened to hear this news, and only 69. While I last saw him as Tom Fisher on Y&R, I became a Roscoe Born fan when he played Robert Barr on Santa Barbara, loved that character and he owned the screen when he was in any scene. Wonderful talent, gone too soon.

  6. Steve

    March 7, 2020 at 12:51 pm

    Roscoe Born had a unique ability to make you forget how preposterous a plot or storyline was, as he totally captured you with his acting.

    Because of Roscoe, Mitch Laurence was the best villain in the history of OLTL, and one of the best in daytime history.

    RIP, and many thanks.

  7. Kay

    March 7, 2020 at 3:04 pm

    He was gifted with a smoldering sexuality that came across the screen even when he played the bad guy you just wanted to melt in his arms very few have that gift ! He didn’t just read lines he had that subtle way about him and he had chemistry with everyone on the screen !

  8. Soaphound

    March 7, 2020 at 5:57 pm

    Wow, what a sad 2020 so far for soap fans and families. Marj Dusay, Lee Bell, Roscoe Born, among others. We do treasure their legacies but can’t help wishing they were still here. Nice to read Greg Rikaart’s kind remarks about “Terrible Tom”.

  9. Momo

    March 9, 2020 at 5:52 am

    Loved him on SB. And then happy to see him when he popped up on Days. Didn’t watch Y&R when he was on. RIP


    March 10, 2020 at 3:40 am

    Too many ex-daytimers so far this year: Paula Kelly, Ja’Net DuBois, Kevin Conway, John Karlen, Lovelady Powell, Marj Dusay, and James Lipton. I will remember him best as Joe Novak from “Ryan’s Hope.”

  11. Momo

    March 10, 2020 at 9:01 am

    Roscoe died by suicide. It makes his death even more so heartbreaking as it did not have to happen.

  12. nancy dillingham

    March 10, 2020 at 4:09 pm

    I read on another thread that he was bipolar and took his own life. So very sorry. Must have been so much pain in his life, if true.

    • Kay

      March 11, 2020 at 10:51 pm

      I am very upset their are support groups out there please reach out we are here we are just a call away no reason to be alone anymore and daytime actors if you truly care be there reach out just takes a hand a voice etc

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