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‘General Hospital’ stars recall their good times working with Anthony Geary

Anthony Geary

“General Hospital” mainstay Anthony Geary is calling it quits after 30 years of appearing as Luke on the immensely popular soap opera.

(Michael Robinson Chávez / Los Angeles Times)

Anthony Geary, who played the charming antihero Luke Spencer on ABC’s “General Hospital,” will make his last appearance on the soap opera on Monday. His departure from the series, which he joined in 1978, has prompted fond memories from some of his co-stars.

Jane Elliot, who plays Spencer’s longtime love Tracy Quartermaine, said she remembers the first time she met Geary.

“Tony never phoned a performance in,” said Elliot. “He never gave less than a full commitment, and that set the tone for everyone who worked with him.”

She recalled when Geary first screen-tested for the role of Spencer, he acted with her. “It’s always awkward with an actor you don’t know,” she said. “I was walking down this flight of stars, and I pass Tony, who is doodling on a piece of paper. He’s doing tic tac toe. I immediately know what kind of actor he is, doing something real in an unreal setting. I went up to him, put an O next to his X, and our relationship was established.”

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In addition to working together, the two are tight personal friends off the set.

She added, “There’s a rich history that flows between the two of us. There’s a deep trust. That’s the fun of the game.”

Jonathan Jackson (ABC’s “Nashville”) clearly remembers working with Geary when he was starting out as a child actor on “General Hospital.” Jackson played Lucky, the son of Luke and Laura Spencer (Genie Francis).

“Tony’s friendship and guidance has meant the world to me,” said Jackson, who was 11 years old when he started on the soap. “He was always extremely warm and very present, there was nothing condescending in him. He never treated me like a kid. We clicked right away.”

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Jackson returned to “General Hospital” recently to film some final scenes with Geary and help close out Spencer’s story line."When I found out he was leaving, I knew I had to come back. He was great. Having those last scenes with me were everything I hoped it would be.”

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