Guiding Light alum Lee Lawson dead at 81

Posted Tuesday, May 24, 2022 12:49:05 PM

Classic soap star Lee Lawson (Bea Reardon, Guiding Light; Wanda Wolek, One Life to Live) has passed away. The New York native was 81.

Lee Lawson, who starred as single mother Beatrice Reardon on Guiding Light throughout the 1980s, passed away on Sunday at the age of 81.

The actress' friend, Marian-Hailey Moss, shared the sad news on Facebook, writing, "My down-to-earth, sassy, smart, and beautiful friend Lee Lawson is telling it like it is in a better place. A fine actress and a super generous friend. I'll meetcha there LEE!! 1941-2022."

Lawson's daughter Leslie also confirmed the news of her mom's passing with a social media post that reads, "My Mother died. May 22, 2022. Thank you for having Chris, Me and Gaby so that we could have Gianna, Wilder and Sterling. We love you. You fought Cancer and COVID-19 like a champ. Rest, you brilliant, woman. Thank you, mom. R.I.P."

As longtime soap fans may remember, GL's Beatrice Reardon was a single mother who was forced to raise her seven children alone after her husband seemingly deserted them (he was later revealed to have been murdered). A proud and independent woman, Bea supported her family by operating a boarding house on 7th Street that became known as the Reardon Boarding House.

In addition to her time on GL, Lawson also appeared as One Life to Live's Wanda Wolek in 1979, which followed her first soap role as Love of Life's Barbara Sterling, which she landed in 1965. Lawson also appeared in a handful of primetime television shows during her career, including Kojak and Maude.

The actress had three children: daughters Leslie and Gabriella Bova, and son Christopher Boal.

Lawson's passing is one of several that Guiding Light fans have been heartbroken to learn about in recent months. The actress' on-screen daughter, Lisa Brown (Nola Reardon), passed away in November; Michael Tylo (Quinton Chamberlain) died last September, and Jerry ver Dorn (Ross Marler) lost his battle with cancer in February.

What are your favorite memories from Lee Lawson's time on soap operas? We want to hear from you -- so drop your comments in the Comments section below, tweet about it on Twitter, share it on Facebook, or chat about it on our Message Boards.

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