The soap world is mourning the loss of one of its own with the tragic death of Jay Pickett, who passed away at the age of 60. Soap fans will remember Pickett best as Frank Scanlon on the GENERAL HOSPITAL spinoff PORT CHARLES, a role he played for nearly the entire run of the soap from 1997-2003. The actor’s death occurred on the set of his upcoming film Treasure Valley, and was announced by his co-star and fellow producer on the movie, Jim Heffel, on Facebook. “I lost a good friend and the world lost a great person,” he wrote. “Jay Pickett decided to ride off into the heavens. Jay died sitting on a horse ready to rope a steer in the movie Treasure Valley in Idaho. The way of a true cowboy.” Although no official cause of death has been announced, reports from people on the set indicate that Pickett suffered a heart attack while filming.
Michael Dietz, who played his TV brother, Joe Scanlon on PC, shared his feelings about the loss on his Facebook page.“My greatest friend has sadly left this world,” he expressed. “We met when we were cast as brothers on PORT CHARLES many, many years ago. He played my big brother on TV but that carried over into real life and an amazing friendship that was one of a kind. He was an incredible husband, father, friend, and godfather to my daughter. Everyone that knew him loved him. I love you, Jay. Keep smiling my friend. All my love to his family, who truly became our family as well. You will be forever missed.”
In addition to his role as Frank on PORT CHARLES, Pickett also temporarily filled in for Ted King as Lorenzo Alcazar on GH and later returned to GH again in 2006-07 in the recurring role of Detective David Harper. Before joining the cast of PORT CHARLES, Pickett played Dr. Chip Lakin on NBC sudser DAYS OF OUR LIVES, and after, could be seen in primetime series like DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES and NCIS: LOS ANGELES as well as films like A Matter of Faith and A Soldier’s Revenge. According to the IMDb, the prolific actor currently has four projects that are completed and in post-production and one that was still filming.
Pickett is survived by his wife, Elena, his daughters, Maegan and Michaela, and a son, Tyler. Our thoughts go out to his family and loved ones during this difficult time.