Sonya Eddy, best known for her role as Epiphany Johnson on the ABC soap opera “General Hospital,” has died at 55, Variety has been confirmed.
“I am heartbroken about the loss of the incredible Sonya Eddy. I truly loved her not only as an actress, but as a friend. The lights in the hub of the nurse’s station will now be a little dimmer, but her spirit and light will live on in both the show and our set. On behalf of the entire GH cast and crew, we send our deepest sympathy to her family, friends and fans. She will be very missed.” Frank Valentini, “General Hospital” executive producer, said in a statement.
Eddy joined the long-running hospital drama in 2006 as the frank, no-nonsense nurse, and played the role for 543 episodes, appearing as recently as this past October. The character served as head nurse, and was the mother to Stan Johnson (played by Kiko Ellsworth) who was killed off from the show in 2007 following a mob hit. In real life, Eddy was also a licensed vocational nurse.
“She left an indelible imprint in every person that she touched, through the screen and off,” Tyler Ford, her producing partner at Eddy Ford Entertainment, said in a statement.
She was born in Concord, Calif., on June 17, 1967, and began her foray into acting in college, studying theater and dance at the University of California, Davis. She received her bachelors of arts degree in 1992, but began her acting career with Ruby Dee’s play “Zora Is My Name” in 1990. Eddy’s additional stage credits include “The Comedy of Errors,” portraying The Witch in Stephen Sondheim’s “Into the Woods ” and playing Bloody Mary in “South Pacific.”
Her career in television spans roles on shows such as “Married…With Children,” “The Drew Carey Show,” “Murphy Brown,” “Seinfeld,” “Home Improvement” and a recurring role in “Joan of Arcadia.” In addition to her tenured role as Epiphany Johnson on “General Hospital,” Eddy also played the character in the show’s primetime spinoff series, “General Hospital: Night Shift,” and was promoted to a main cast member on the short-lived series.
“The world lost another creative angel,” Eddy’s friend and fellow actor Octavia Spencer wrote on Instagram. “Her legions of ‘General Hospital’ fans will miss her.”
In honor of Eddy’s memory, donations can be made to The Foundation of the National Student Nurses’ Association Inc.