I just found out that Jacklyn Zeman, Bobbie Spencer on GENERAL HOSPITAL, has died. This is so shocking as she was still so young. I remember first seeing her back in the 70s as Lana McLaine on One Life to Live. After she left OLTL, she showed up on GENERAL HOSPITAL as Nurse Bobbie Spencer. Later on her older brother, Luke (Anthony Geary), came to town and caused quite a lot of trouble for Bobbie, or his “Barbara Jean.” Throughout my love-hate-love for GENERAL HOSPITAL due in most part to the storylines happening at the time, Jackie never disappointed with stellar performances. Whether it was the domestic violence story with D. L. Brock (David Grogh), her love for Noah Drake (Rick Springfield), or Bobbie’s brief flirtation with Stefan Cassadine (Stephen Nichols), she was always a joy to watch. I think though where I really fell in love with her was when Tamara came to the show as her daughter, Carly. I loved how Tamara and Jackie formed a beautiful mother/daughter team. The love the two had for each other was palpable. You could actually believe they were what they were playing. During most of Carly’s dramas with Sonny (Maurice Benard), Lorenzo Alcazar (Ted King), or with the discovery of Carly’s father, John Durant (Corben Bersen), Jackie and Tamara were to me, not really acting. They were mother and daughter. Their scenes in 2005 after the “death” of Michael (Dylan Cash) where some of the best scenes. Two mothers dealing with the deaths of children, Bobbie having lost her beloved BJ (Brighton Hertford), and Carly dealing with the kidnapping and subsequent murder of Michael, I was glued to the screen watching these two women play out intimate scenes making me sob like a baby.
When Tamara left GENERAL HOSPITAL in 2005, I missed their scenes together. I quit watching at that time and thought I’d never go back. However, Tamara returned in 2017 to play the part of Dr. Kim Nero. Seeing them in scenes together hurt, because I wanted Carly and Bobbie to have some of their talks together. I wanted to see the real Carly with her “Momma.” After Tamara left again in 2019 to resume her role as Ava Vitali on DAYS OF OUR LIVES, I kept hoping somehow someway Tamara would return and would play Carly again. That we would see Carly and Bobbie together again and Tamara and Jackie doing what they always did: Move me beyond tears with their eloquence and beautiful moments. I always hoped Tamara would resume playing Carly. Now with Jackie gone we, I. won’t have that chance. This saddens me. This hurts.
On behalf of TAMARA BRAUN ONLINE, I want to send my condolences to Jackie’s family, friends, colleagues, and fellow GH fans who I know will be mourning this loss. Goodbye Jackie. You will be missed and loved. Thank you for all you gave us over the years. The soap gods are fuller for taking you into their embrace. xx