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Emily McLaughlin (December 1, 1930 - April 26, 1991) was an American soap opera actress.


She was born in White Plains, New York, where her father was mayor. She was educated at Middlebury College.


She was briefly married to actor Jeffrey Hunter before his death in 1969. She was also married to actor Robert Lansing from 1956 to 1969, with whom she had a son.


From 1963 to 1991, she starred in the soap opera General Hospital as Nurse Jessie Brewer, the trusted confidant to John Beradino's lead character, Steve Hardy.

Her character in General Hospital was seen less and less during the 1980s, and although she wanted the steady work and to keep her job, her failing health made it difficult. She was eventually demoted to day-player status, but still retained her billing at the top of the cast crawl. Towards the end of her life, she was only shown on the serial a couple of times a year. She would continue with this schedule until the year of her death from cancer. On April 26th, 1991, at 9:54 in the morning, she passed away at the young age of 60. She had worked on GH until February 13th of that year. After her passing, co-star John Beradino hosted a brief on-air tribute to the actress, but the character of Jessie Brewer was never actually written out or referred to; she simply disappeared without explanation. Not until years later, during an anniversary episode, did Dr. Steve Hardy mention that Jessie had died.

Emily McLaughlin is interred next to Jeffrey Hunter in the Glen Haven Memorial Park cemetery in Sylmar, California.

Further reading

  • Don Keefer, “Emily McLaughlin’s Life Story”. Afternoon TV. September 1975, pp. 48-61.

Emily had a daughter Mary Ann Anderson who wrote and published Portrait of A Soap Star about her. John Beradino announced within days of Emily's passing, at the end of a General Hospital episode, that Emily McLughlin passed away.

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