He’s no longer on the show but he’s far from forgotten! Jerry Douglas, who played patriarch John Abbott for years on The Young and the Restless, is celebrating his birthday today.
Douglas joined the top-rated soap in 1982 as the Abbott patriarch. Soon, the clan had taken center stage on the show and the Abbotts have retained a place of prominence ever since!
The actor, a native of Boston, Massachusetts, had amassed quite a list of credits by the time he landed in Genoa City. He had appeared on The Untouchables, Gunsmoke, Bonanza, and Mission: Impossible, often playing the “heavy” or bad guy.
When the role of John Abbott, a caring patriarch came along, Douglas accepted it, bringing to the part a calm reserve. John’s kindness was tested often, such as when he learned that Jill (Brenda Dickson, Deborah Adair; currently, Jess Walton) cheated on him with Jack (then Terry Lester, now, Peter Bergman).
Douglas took part in one of soaps’ first storylines about AIDS when he was involved with Jessica (Rebecca Street), mother to Cricket (Lauralee Bell). After Jessica’s death, John reconnected with Jill, and later had a relationship with Mamie (Veronica Redd).
Over the years, he’d be visited by his ex-wife Dina Mergeron (Marla Adams).
John spent time in New York with Billy (now Jason Thompson) in the ’90s but always returned to Genoa City. He became involved with Gloria (first, Joan Van Ark, now, Judith Chapman), which indirectly led to his untimely death after John went to jail for killing her ex, Tom (Roscoe Born).
Douglas brought John back to the show many times as a spirit or Jack’s conscience. Fans will always remember the actor’s portrayal of the beloved Abbott patriarch.
Soap Hub joins Douglas’ family, friends, and fans in wishing the actor a happy birthday!
The Young and the Restless airs weekdays on CBS. Check local listings for air times.