Anthony Geary Joins Genie Francis In Leaving ‘General Hospital’ As Laura & Luke Spencer Bid Adieu [Video]

Anthony Geary ended his reign on General Hospital. Known for his role as Luke Spencer, Anthony exchanged emotional farewells with friends that he had made after more than 30 years on the soap opera that Geary helped to make so beloved, reported MSN.

And social media gave his co-workers the opportunity to share their admiration and adoration for Anthony. Geary, declared Ryan Carnes (known as Lucas Jones), is a legend.

“On set send-off today at #GH @GeneralHospital with the living #legend himself #AnthonyGeary,” posted Ryan.

But Luke Spencer’s real world co-parts made it clear that they also regard Anthony as a pal.

“[Geary is] not just a great actor but a great guy,” said Maurice Benard. “I’m proud to call him my friend.”

Several of those paying homage to Geary used Anthony’s nickname of Tony, such as Michelle Stafford.

“#TonyGeary = #MAGIC that is all…”

But for the executive producer of General Hospital, bidding adieu to Anthony was challenging. Geary, however, made it clear that he felt it was ideal timing, said exec producer Frank Valentini.

“Tony recently made his intentions clear that he would vacate his role of Luke Spencer this year, and it was a decision he did not come to lightly. After 37 years on the air, Tony felt this was the right time to bid adieu to Luke Spencer, Port Charles, and General Hospital,” said Frank.

Genie Francis and Anthony made the characters of Laura and Luke forever associated with romance that does not always run smoothly, as well as one of the highly anticipated televised weddings.

Geary emphasized that although he loved the role, it had become increasingly difficult to spend the hours on set needed for the soap opera, reported E! News.

At 67, Anthony looks back with satisfaction on his General Hospital career.

“The people at ABC and at GH have been amazingly good to me, allowing me to live on two continents and treating me, for the most part, extremely well,” said Geary.

“But I’m just weary of the grind and have been for 20 years. There was a point after my back surgery last year where it became clear to me that my time is not infinite. And I really don’t want to die, collapsing in a heap, on that GH set one day. That wouldn’t be too poetic.”

Anthony rocked the role of Luke from 1978 until 1984. After taking a break, he resumed in 1993.

But fans’ sorrow recently got some help from Genie Francis, who returned for a short run. Francis expressed her appreciation for playing Laura to Anthony’s Luke, admitting that her relationship with Geary and the cast had become personal, reported Bio.

“Obviously it’s been a huge part of my life and bringing it to a closure is personal and I’m very glad I am a part of it,” said Genie. “It’s been my life for decades. I’m feeling very nostalgic and appropriately grateful for what I had.”

As the Inquisitr reported, Genie returned to General Hospital after a 30-pound weight loss. The producers tweeted their joy.

“Hey #GH fans: I have AWESOME news…@GenieFrancis is coming back to @GeneralHospital!!!”

And the door is always open for Luke and Laura to return.

“Genie is a part of our GH family and the door has always been open for her to return when the timing and story are right,” emphasized Valentini.

What do you think about Anthony’s exit from General Hospital? Would you like to see Geary and Genie return to the soap opera? Post your comments below.

[Photo by Jesse Grant / Getty Images for NATAS]

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