Daytime has lost quite a few soap stars in 2023, and the recent passing of ONE LIFE TO LIVE actor Kamar de los Reyes (Antonio) was particularly devastating. The actor died on Christmas Eve at the age of 56 following a short battle with cancer. Many of his former castmates have already shared their personal memories with us, and now Erika Slezak (Viki) has expressed her grief.
“I was truly saddened to hear about Kamar,” Slezak told Soaps In Depth. “We always got along very well. He was a very nice man and talented actor who took his craft seriously. My heart goes out to [his wife,] Sherri [Saum, ex-Keri, OLTL] and his children — so tragic to die so young.”
Slezak took over the role of Victoria “Viki” Lord on OLTL back in 1971 and remained with the soap until its final ABC episode in 2012 and also appeared in the short-lived online revival in 2013. So she was around when de los Reyes joined the cast as gang member-turned-police detective Antonio Vega in July 1995. And she was there when he left in 1997, made recurring appearances in 1998, reprised his role from February 2000 through March 2009, and made his final appearances on the soap in April 2009.
De los Reyes and Slezak had many opportunities to work closely together on OLTL, and not just because Antonio was a police detective trying to keep the peace in Llanview. He also romanced and married her daughter, Jessica Buchanan.
Our thoughts continue to be with de los Reyes’ family and friends during this difficult time.