We'll be loving you...always
December 9, 1914-February 3, 2010
Frances Reid, the
beloved star of "Days of Our Lives" since its inception in 1965, has passed
away. Reid died on February 3, 2010 at her assisted living home in Beverly
Hills, California at the age of 95. Known to millions of fans throughout
the world as Salem's favorite grandmother, Alice Horton, Reid was the last
remaining original castmember of "Days", having been on contract since the
series premiered on November 8, 1965. In total, she was the star of "Days" for
44 years, 3 months. While Alice Horton had many offspring, Reid never had any
children of her own. After her husband, Philip Bourneuf died in 1979, she never
remarried. She is survived by her niece, Laurie Rocha, and her great nieces,
April, Christie, Leanne and Marie. There will be a memorial service in April.
Donations may be made in her memory to Habitat for Humanity and Save The
Frances Reid was born to Anna Priest and Charles Reid on December 9, 1914 in Wichita Falls, Texas. She was the third of four children for the Reids, all daughters. Her sisters were Dorothy, Mildred and Anna May. When she was a young child, her family moved to Berkeley, California. After attending the University of California and Pasadena Community Playhouse, Reid pursued her acting career immediately, appearing in the West Coast production of "Tovarich."
Reid moved to New York in 1938 and made her Broadway debut on January 17, 1939 in "Here There's a Will." A critic reviewing the play that evening stated that: "She is a pretty and agreeable young actress who manages to conduct herself simply and well." The famed columnist Walter Winchell had this to state about Reid's Broadway debut: "Frances Reid as the young secretary is an attractive actress, whose natural pretending kept at least one reviewer interested when she was on view." In later years, she would appear in Broadway productions of "Cyrano de Bergerac", "Little Women", "King Richard III", "Twelfth Night" and as Ophelia in "Hamlet." While appearing in a summer stock production in Connecticut, she met her future husband, fellow stage actor Philip Bourneuf. The two were married on June 27, 1940.
Throughout the 1930s and 1940s, while she was appearing on Broadway, Reid also had countless roles on radio soap operas, including "Prologue to Glory", "Charlotte Corday", and "Mrs. Moonlight." In April 1954, Reid made the transition from radio soaps to television soaps when she was cast as the lead in "Portia Faces Life." She was picked to play Portia because the producer thought she looked the part. She then went on to portray Grace Baker on "As the World Turns" from 1959-1962 and Rose Pollock on "The Edge of Night" in 1964.
In June 1965, "Days of Our Lives" taped its pilot episode, with Macdonald Carey as Tom Horton and Mary Jackson as his wife, Alice. When NBC ordered the pilot as a full-time series, Frances Reid was hired to play Alice and the pilot episode was re-shot on October 29, 1965. Throughout the years, Alice Horton was the true heart of Salem, always willing to lend an ear and help her children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and all of the other citizens of Salem. And, of course, Alice was always ready to bake her famous Horton doughnuts.
Over the years, Reid was honored with four Soap Opera Digest Awards as outstanding actress in a mature role. She was nominated for a Daytime Emmy as supporting actress in 1979 and as lead actress in 1987. In 2004, she received the Emmys top honor, a Lifetime Achivement Award.
In one of her few non-"Days" appearances after 1980, Reid appeared on a special episode of "American Dreams", an NBC series which was set in 1965, the year "Days" began. When once asked about retirement, Reid said that age was no reason to retire from the thing she loved to do best: act. She taped her final episode of "Days" just before her 93rd birthday in December 2007. The episode aired on December 26, 2007. In her final scene, she hugged a picture of her late husband, Tom. Fittingly, her last line as Alice was "Merry Christmas, Tom."
Frances Reid will be remembered not just as an actress, but as a loving "grandma" to all the "Days" fans. One will never be able to think about "Days", Salem, or the Hortons, without thinking about Frances. Rest in peace, dear Frances, and thank you for so many wonderful memories.
Click here for statements about Frances from Kristian Alfonso,
Nadia Bjorlin, Shawn Christian, Jason Cook, Ken Corday, Mary Beth Evans, Farah
Fath, Deidre Hall, Bill Hayes, Susan Seaforth Hayes, Leann Hunley, Peggy McCay,
Peter Reckell, Melissa Reeves, James Reynolds, Suzanne Rogers, Louise Sorel and
Statement from Christie Clark (Carrie Brady): "Very sad about Frances Reid. Frances was a very special lady, with a special twinkle in her eye. We have a birthday a couple of days apart and she would always give me some balloons."
Click here for interviews of Frances through the
Frances Reid Memorial Video
(prepared by her nieces)
Frances Reid: Through the Years
LEFT: The Horton Family in 1966: John Clarke (Mickey), Frances Reid (Alice), Marie Cheatham (Marie), Macdonald Carey (Tom), Edward Mallory (Bill). RIGHT: Macdonald Carey (Tom) celebrates the beginning of the sixth year of "Days" with Denise Alexander (Susan), Marie Cheatham (Marie), Susan Flannery (Laura), Frances Reid (Alice), Heather North (Sandy) and Susan Seaforth (Julie) each holding a candle for each season that "Days" has been on the air.
LEFT: The Horton Family in 1973: Back Row: Edward Mallory (Bill), John Clarke (Mickey), Marie Cheatham (Marie), John Lupton (Tommy). Front Row: Frances Reid (Alice), Macdonald Carey (Tom), Patricia Barry (Addie). RIGHT: Frances, Mac and John, the three original castmembers of "Days", celebrate 10 years together as Hortons in 1975.
RIGHT: The two longest-running Horton couples: Mickey & Maggie and Tom & Alice. CENTER: Alice & Tom pose for the camera.
RIGHT: Melissa Brennan (Jennifer), Matthew Ashford (Jack), Frances Reid (Alice) and Macdonald Carey (Tom)
celebrate 25 years of "Days" in 1990.
LEFT: The Horton Family in 2000: Kristian Alfonso (Hope), Melissa Reeves (Jennifer), Bryan Dattilo (Lucas), Frances Reid (Alice), John Clarke (Mickey), Suzanne Rogers (Maggie). RIGHT: The Horton Family in 2001: Suzanne Rogers (Maggie), John Clarke (Mickey), Frances Reid (Alice), Bill Hayes (Doug), Susan Seaforth Hayes (Julie).
LEFT: The Hortons celebrate Christmas Day in 2002. Back Row: Kirsten Storms (Belle), Jason Cook (Shawn), Peter Reckell (Bo),
Bryan Dattilo (Lucas), Melissa Reeves (Jennifer), Matthew Ashford (Jack), Kristian Alfonso (Hope), Bill Hayes (Doug), Susan Seaforth Hayes (Julie), Suzanne Rogers (Maggie). Front Row: John Clarke (Mickey), Frances Reid (Alice), Megan Corletto (Abigail), Darian Weiss (Will).
RIGHT: Frances cuts the cake at the 40th annivesary "Days" party in November, 2005.
BELOW: The call sheet for the first-ever week of taping "Days" from October 29-November 4, 1965.
Alice Horton Through the Years
(Youtube links not associated with Jason47.com)
"Days" Pilot Episode, November 8, 1965.
Alice chats with Marie (Marie Cheatham) and Tony (Dick Colla).
First "Days" Christmas Episode, December 24, 1965
Alice and Mickey (John Clarke) discuss the holiday.
Alice & Tom's 50th Wedding Anniversary Episode, March 7, 1980.
The Horton family sings Tom & Alice's song, "Always."
Tom & Alice dance to "Always", 1982.
25th Anniversary: November 21, 1990.
Tom's Death, June 1994.
Alice reminisces about her life with Tom.
Alice reads the Christmas Story, December 24, 1999.
35th Anniversary Episode: November 8, 2000.
10,000th Episode Tribute, February 21, 2005.
Fourth of July Picnic, July 4, 2007.
Alice's Last Episode, December 26, 2007.