Falcon Crest Star Abby Dalton Dies at 88: 'An Accomplished Actress and Beautiful Friend'

Ally Mauch
·2-min read

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Abby Dalton, an Emmy-nominated actress best known for her role in Falcon Crest, died last week at the age of 88.

She died on Nov. 23 in Los Angeles after battling "a long illness," her rep told Deadline.

Dalton got her start in film in the 1950s with several projects from director Roger Corman, including Rock All Night and The Saga of the Viking Women and Their Voyage to the Waters of the Great Sea Serpent, both of which premiered in 1957.

She later became a TV star, joining 1960s sitcoms The Joey Bishop Show and Hennesey, the latter of which earned Dalton an Emmy nomination in 1961 for outstanding performance in a supporting role by an actor or actress in a series.

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Throughout her career, Dalton was a frequent player on popular game shows at the time, including The $25,000 Pyramid, Password, Match Game and Body Language. She was also an original panelist on The Hollywood Squares, a game show that first premiered on NBC in 1966.

In 1981, Dalton took on the role of Julia Cumson in Falcon Crest, a primetime soap opera following the drama at a family-operated wine vineyard. She remained on the popular series through 1986, though the show continued on until its cancellation in 1990.

Dalton's fellow Falcon Crest stars paid tribute to her on social media following the news of her death.

"The lovely Abby Dalton has left the stage. She was a mother a wife an accomplished actress and beautiful friend. #FalconCrest," Susan Sullivan wrote on Twitter alongside a cast photo from the series.

Added Sarah Douglas, "Very sad to learn of the death of the fabulous Abby Dalton with whom I was fortunate enough to work with on #FalconCrest She was always SO much fun and a terrific talent. Condolences to all her family and friends."

Dalton is survived by her husband of 60 years, Jack D. Smith, as well as her children Matthew, Kathleen and John, her grandchildren Mac, Jack, Ayden Grace, and a great grandson, Mathias.