Soap opera star Matthew Cowles — best known as "super villain" Billy Clyde Tuggle on All My Children — died at home, of undisclosed causes, on Thursday, May 22. He was 69.
Matthew was first married to actress Kathleen Dezina, but in 1983 he married actress Christine Baranski (The Birdcage, The Good Wife) and she survives him, along with their two daughters.
Matthew is a two-time Daytime Emmy nominee and also a stage actor — like Christine, 62 — and he wrote three plays. In addition to All My Children, he played Curtis Love in The Bold and the Beautiful, Cowboy Dan in Life on Mars, William Brandt in Oz, and the ferry captain in the movie Shutter Island.
Matthew's manager, Tsu Tsu Stanton, confirmed his death on May 23, tweeting, "#Matthew Cowles passed away on 5/22.I had the pleasure of being his manager. He was a very gifted and kind man who loved life and everyone." All My Children's Cady McClain reacted to the news on May 24, tweeting, "so sad. What a lovely man... I adored working with him last year. So kind."
It was big news for AMC fans when Billy Clyde Tuggle returned to the show in 2013, even though the character fell off a bridge 20 years previous. But in true soap style he survived by landing on a mattress.
It would be nice to think that kind of thing happens in real life, but unfortunately most of us just get one shot at it. Our condolences to Matthew's family and friends. He will be missed!