Saturday, March 29, 2014

Dane Witherspoon dead at age 56

A Martinez has evidently broken the news on his Facebook page that nobody else out there has, that Dane Witherspoon, his "Santa Barbara" costar, has died. BRBTV offers condolences to Witherspoon's family and friends.

We loved him as the original Joe Perkins from the moment the show launched in July 1984, that blessed summer we were pinned to the TV to catch this new soap amid the summer Olympics where Mary Lou Retton and Carl Lewis reigned.

Martinez, who played Cruz Castillo to much acclaim on the soap, offered these words, which he kindly allows BRBTV to post:

"Dane passed this morning. People who watched Santa Barbara in its earliest days will remember him as Joe Perkins, a character to which he brought a quiet grace and deep, bittersweet sense of soul. He was a singular, standup guy, loved and admired by many. My first thought, upon meeting him in 1984: 'This is the most beautiful man I've ever seen.' That beauty went all the way to his core."

Witherspoon was born in December 1957 in Texas, as Richard Dane Witherspoon, according to the IMDb. He appeared on "The Waltons" and "Eight is Enough" before his "SB" days, and he kept a pretty low profile afterward. What a shame; we thought he was a natural talent and so wonderfully handsome.

He was married to his "SB" costar Robin Wright from 1986 to 1988, and yes, we saw those sparks in the Kelly and Joe storyline. They were just electric together; we were so bummed when Witherspoon was off the show.

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