Fans say goodbye to 'All My Children'

September 23, 2011 4:39:53 PM PDT
Friday marked the end of an era in daytime television. ABC's long-running soap opera ''All My Children'' aired its final TV episode at noon on ABC7.

The show will continue online but many of the stars won't be making that transition.

Chicago fans of "All My Children" gathered Friday at Sidetrack bar to watch the last episode of the soap. In attendance were current and past actors, including Chrisell Stause, Terri Ivens, Jeffrey Carlson, Matt Borlenghi, and Brian Gaskill. There were trivia games, raffle and a meet-and-greet with fans.

"I loved it," said Lety Molina.

"Very, very sad. I've been crying for the last two and a half weeks, every episode," said Katie Lindberg.

"It's so touching to know how big a part of their lives it's been. There's been such an outpouring and people telling us how much it's meant to them," said Stause, who played Amanda Martin from 2005 to 2011.

"It was one of the most extraordinary parts of my life thus far. So I'm very grateful to be here," said Carlson, who played Zarf and Zoey from 2006 to 2007.

Over the course of four decades, "All My Children" portrayed some of the most recognizable stars in daytime television. Front and center is Susan Lucci as Erica Kane, the temptress of the fictional Philadelphia suburb of Pine Valley. Fans and stars reflected on what made the show such a staple of people's lives.

"They had so many things that were going on. My brother was getting drafted and here was Phil who had to go to Vietnam and had to leave the love of his life behind. And that's when it first started. And it grabs you. I'm devastated," said Janet Hand, who watched the soap for 41 years.

"It's kind of like you inherit your soap opera, your grandmother watched it, then your mother, then you did too. And it gave you something to talk about at the dinner table," said Ivens, who played Simone from 2001 to 2006.

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