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John Aniston, ‘Days of Our Lives’ Star and Father of Jennifer Aniston, Dies at 89

John Aniston, the charming Greek-born actor who for greater than three a long time portrayed the ruthless Victor Kiriakis on the NBC cleaning soap opera Days of Our Lives, has died. He was 89.

The father of actress Jennifer Aniston died Friday, his daughter introduced.

“Sweet papa …⁣ John Anthony Aniston,” the Friends mega-star wrote in a tribute submit on Instagram Monday, “You were one of the most beautiful humans I ever knew. I am so grateful that you went soaring into the heavens in peace — and without pain. And on 11/11 no less! You always had perfect timing. That number will forever hold an even greater meaning for me now.”

She ended the post: “I’ll love you till the end of time.”

Aniston had performed a distinct character, a health care provider, on Days of Our Lives in 1969-70, then labored on two different daytime serials, CBS’ Love of Life and CBS/NBC’s Search for Tomorrow, earlier than returning to Days in July 1985. He obtained a Daytime Emmy nomination for his efforts in 2017.

“Soap operas have just the right amount of recognition. You get just enough to satisfy your ego but not enough to disrupt your life,” he said in an exquisite 2018 interview with Adrienne Faillace for the Television Academy Foundation web site The Interviews. “Whereas some people, my daughter being one of them, can’t go anywhere.”

The dashing Aniston additionally appeared twice on Kojak — that present’s star, the late Telly Savalas, was Jennifer’s godfather — and likewise confirmed up on episodes of Combat!, I Spy, The Virginian, That Girl, Airwolf, Star Trek: Voyager, The West Wing, Gilmore Girls, Cold Case and Mad Men.

In the early Seventies, Aniston made it by means of three auditions to play newscaster Ted Baxter on The Mary Tyler Moore Show, however the half finally went to Ted Knight.

“The original script described [the character] as the Marcello Mastroianni of Minneapolis,” he stated. He was informed he didn’t get employed as a result of producers “didn’t want the possibility of a romance between Baxter and Mary.” When he noticed the present, he realized that Knight was excellent for the half.

One of 4 youngsters, Yiannis Anastasakis was born on July 24, 1933, in Chania on the Greek island of Crete. His father, Antonios, had gone forwards and backwards between the U.S. and Greece earlier than leaving his house nation for good in 1935, bringing the household to Chester, Pennsylvania, the place he opened a restaurant.

Aniston began appearing in performs in highschool and did two seasons of inventory on the Allenberry Playhouse whereas attending Penn State University. After getting his bachelor’s diploma in arts and letters, he served within the U.S. Navy as an intelligence officer based mostly in Panama.

He moved to New York and in 1959 acquired a visitor spot on the CBS cop present Brenner, starring Edward Binns, and commenced a 14-month stint taking part in a Native American, Chief Brown Bear, within the comedian off-Broadway musical Little Mary Sunshine, starring Eileen Brennan.

Aniston tried for a component on Days of Our Lives and misplaced out to Bill Hayes, however he accepted a proposal to play Eric Richards, a jail physician.

After being thwarted in a bid to go to medical college in Greece, he returned to appearing, spending three years because the Spaniard Edouard “Eddie” Aleata on Love of Life — Christopher Reeve performed considered one of his stepsons — and 6 because the philandering Martin Tourneur on Search for Tomorrow. His daughter, then only a child, appeared on that cleaning soap as an additional.

“I told her you don’t want to be in show business, show business stinks,” he recalled. “I inform everyone who desires to be an actor, ‘Don’t be an actor, be one thing else.’ Because if my telling them to remain out of present enterprise goes to maintain them out, they shouldn’t be in it within the first place.

“But I knew right from the beginning when Jennifer started auditioning for things [she would be a success], because she always got called back.”

Aniston stated portraying the Greek crime boss Victor within the city of Salem appealed to him as a result of “you could punish your enemies and reward your friends. What’s not to like?” His character was married 5 instances, spent a 12 months and a half in a coma and as soon as was killed off, solely to be discovered alive on the island of Melaswen (that’s new Salem spelled backward).

Friends followers know full properly that in a second-season storyline, Joey Tribbiani, performed by Jennifer’s castmate Matt LeBlanc, will get a job on Days of Our Lives, however his neurosurgeon character, Dr. Drake Ramoray, is killed off after falling down an elevator shaft.

Aniston was married to late actress Nancy Dow (Jennifer’s mom) from 1965 till their 1981 divorce and to actress Sherry Rooney, whom he met on Love of Life, since June 1984. In addition to his spouse and daughter, he’s survived by his son, Alexander.

Acting, Aniston identified in his TV Academy Foundation interview, “beats working for a living. Especially when you’re doing theater, you can feel the beast … When you’re in a play and you really control the audience, it’s a lot of fun.”

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