In a somber turn of events, the legendary US actor Bill Hayes, renowned for his enduring role in the soap opera Days of Our Lives spanning over five decades, has sadly passed away at the age of 98.
A Storied Career: Portraying Doug Williams
Bill Hayes first graced the screen as Doug Williams in 1970, marking the beginning of a remarkable journey on Days of Our Lives. During his time on the show, he not only captivated audiences with his portrayal but also found love on set, meeting his future wife, actress Susan Seaforth Hayes.
Lasting Legacy on Days of Our Lives
Celebrating his 98th birthday on the set last June, surrounded by co-stars, Bill Hayes continued to leave an indelible mark on the American daytime soap. His portrayal of Doug Williams, initially introduced as a convict and lounge singer, resonated with viewers for over 50 years, a testament to his enduring talent and the character’s timeless appeal.
A Love Story On and Off Screen – Bill Hayes and Susan Seaforth Hayes
Susan Seaforth Hayes, his co-star and real-life partner, joined Days of Our Lives two years before Hayes, portraying the character of Julie Williams. Their on-screen romance blossomed into a real-life love story, culminating in marriage in 1974. The couple even exchanged vows again on television, mirroring their characters’ union, and their love story gained such popularity that they graced the cover of Time in that memorable year.
Celebrating Achievements and Legacy of Bill Hayes
In recognition of their exceptional contributions to the world of daytime television, both Bill Hayes and Susan Seaforth Hayes received the Daytime Emmys Lifetime Achievement Awards in 2018. This accolade acknowledged not only their individual talents but also the enduring impact of their on-screen partnership.
Farewell to a Hollywood Icon
Bill Hayes, born William Foster Hayes III in 1925 in Harvey, Illinois, initially began his career as a musician, achieving success with “The Ballad of Davy Crockett.” Transitioning to acting, his memorable role on NBC’s Days of Our Lives defined his legacy. The actor, surrounded by family, peacefully passed away on Friday, and while the cause of his death remains undisclosed, his contribution to the world of entertainment will undoubtedly be remembered for years to come.
Hayes, survived by five children from a previous marriage to Mary Hobbs, leaves behind a legacy that transcends generations, a testament to the enduring power of his talent and the timeless allure of Days of Our Lives.
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