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'The Young and the Restless' to honor Jeanne Cooper

Soap opera plans tribute episode for diva and will lay her character to rest in July

By TVDeeva Deanna Barnert May 13, 2013 1:42PM

"The Young and the Restless" will break the fourth wall for a special tribute episode honoring the late Jeanne Cooper on Tuesday, May 28. Cast, friends and family will gather on the Chancellor mansion set for a celebration of her life. The death of Cooper's beloved character Katherine will not hit Genoa City until this summer.


Bing: More about Jeanne Cooper | "The Young and the Restless"


Cooper's May 8 passing left the daytime community reeling. The 84-year-old, Emmy-winning powerhouse had ruled "The Young and the Restless" canvas as Katherine Chancellor for nearly 40 years and was the show’s longest-running cast member. This week, her co-stars will leave their characters behind for a day to shoot a special one-hour memorial episode.


"We'll serve tea and let everyone talk and cry and laughs and share, and we'll find the best photos and clips we can get our hands on and edit it all together into a beautiful celebration episode," explained "The Young and the Restless" executive producer Jill Farren Phelps. "This is all for Jeanne."

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Scheduled participants include Jess Walton (Jill), Melody Thomas Scott (Nikki), Eric Braeden (Victor), Peter Bergman (Jack), Doug Davidson (Paul), Christian LeBlanc (Michael), Michelle Stafford (Phyllis), Tracey Bregman (Lauren), Kristoff St. John (Neil), Greg Rikaart (Kevin), Billy Miller (Billy), Daniel Goddard (Cane), Kate Linder (Esther), Bryton James (Devon), Tricia Cast (Nina), Lauralee Bell (Christine), Beth Maitland (Traci), Michael Fairman (Murphy) and Jerry Douglas (John); along with former costars John McCook (Eric, "The Bold and the Beautiful") and Heather Tom (Katie, "The Bold and the Beautiful"). George Guzman and Patti Denney, from "The Young and the Restless" hair and makeup department, will also share their memories, according to a TV Guide report. 


Cooper's real-life son, Corbin Bersen ("Psyche," "L.A. Law"), who kept fans updated through her final health battle, will also take part in the tribute. When Katherine passes away this summer, he will return to the show as his character, Father Todd.


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As previously reported, Cooper's final scene has already aired. As seen in the May 3 clip above, Katherine returned to Chancellor manse after having a tumor removed and ascended the stair one last time. When Jill offered to help her, she said her final words as Katherine: "I think I can manage ... Goodnight."


Katherine will be written out of story and sent on vacation with her husband for a few months, so the show can properly address the character's passing. Genoa City will be hit by her death sometime in July.


"The greatest way to honor Jeanne is to make Kay's exit as dramatic and meaningful as possible," Phelps said. "We have not yet decided how Kay's life will actually end, but we are talking a bit already about what she will leave in her wake. It will be something that will leave the memory of Kay Chancellor deeply imbedded in everyone in Genoa City. What happens to Chancellor Industries? What decisions did Kay make in the event of her death? The ramifications need to be big."


"The Young and the Restless" airs weekdays on CBS. 

May 18, 2013 8:28AM
saw jeanne on marie osmonds show celebrating the y&r 40th anniversary. she looked frail but still beautiful. i am sure it was one of her last appearances . i am so glad i happened to catch it. can't wait for the tribute to her. my dvr will  be ready!!!!!!!!!!! she will be sadly missed. i hope the writers send her out in a huge but classy way. God bless this wonderful lady.
May 16, 2013 8:10AM
I happened to be watching that May episode and I was thinking to myself, "Are they writing her out of the show?" because the scene seemed so final...I also thought that she was looking particularly frail.  She was a GREAT actress and I just loved her character...She will be greatly missed.
May 15, 2013 6:08AM
I agree. When she went up those infamous stairs, that should have been the end. It would have been better than having her go away and Murphy returning alone. Even though I stopped watching when they killed off John Abbott, I know now I will never return to Genoa City. All of it's class died with The Duchess.
May 14, 2013 8:39PM
I have watched her for many years. It is a sad day.
This is a sad day for me.  I knew from seeing her on screen a couple of weeks ago in the hospital scene that she was becoming too weak to participate... But, Lord, not this!  Gone from us. Take me back to college, we scheduled our classes around 11am and made our way EVERYDAY to the student union to watch Genoa madness.  Wow, she will be forever missed and never forgotten.  I praise God for the enlightment about life she brought my way.  And, Jeanne Cooper is correct, Our Lord Jesus Christ is awesome!
May 14, 2013 2:45PM

With Deepest Sympathy to the Family and Friends of Jeanne Cooper,


Words cannot express the loss of Jeanne, I have been a dedicated fan of the Young and Restless,

I too fill the pain and sorrow when finding out of her passing, it was like loosing someone in my own family! I've brought my children up watching her and the cast for the last 31 years. You'll be forever MISSED and Thank You for all the Wonderful Years you given to us all, Your Fans!!!!!!

May you rest in Peace.  God Bless your Family and may you find love and comfort in the love of our Awesome Lord Jesus Chist


May 14, 2013 9:45AM
I was living in Fort Campbell Kentucky when the very first show aired. I called my mom in Illinois and told her, you gotta watch this show. She started watching it and never stopped. She is 88 years old now and I am 58. We both loved Mrs. Chancelllor. We feel like we lost  a member of our family. I have said forever if I ever had enough money I would take my mom to a taping of the show. I wanted her to see Mrs. Chancellor and Victor in person so bad. . This was a dream for me to do this for my mom. Well, I never had the money to go to take us both on this trip and it is sad. I know it is a fictional drama but Mrs. Chancellor and Victor gave me and my mom lots of enjoyment and fun talks about the show. If she missed a show she would call me and if i did i would call her to find out what happened. There had to be a little bit of the real Mrs Cooper in the episodes because Mrs Chancellor was just too good as an actress. My mom and I had a good connection partly because we loved this show. That was a good thing in my life. We loved you Mrs. Chancellor, fictional character or not. They have old reruns of a lot of shows and my mom and I would love it if the Young and the Restless would rerun the show again starting from the very beginning. We would watch it all again just like we did when it first aired. Believe me lots and lots of others would get tremendous enjoyment from that.
May 14, 2013 9:42AM
In response to cjs daughter...I completely hear you.  I am a third generation Y&R watcher and I was not allowed to talk when it was on.  My mother and grandmother were complete devotees and I have come to love the Duchess as well.  May she rest in peace.  She brought so much joy, bling and drama to so many lives.
May 14, 2013 9:38AM
I am sad that Katherine (Jeanne Cooper) has passed.  She was always one of my favorites on the soap.  May she rest in piece.  The soap will never be the same without her.

Marian Reed
May 14, 2013 9:30AM
I too am one of MANY, MANY people who have watch Y&R from the very beginning. I hoped so much that she would have pulled through her medical issues and gotten back her health/strength and returned to her beloved roll as Mrs C. And I too felt that when she went up the steps, that she was going to pass in her sleep because Ms Cooper had decided that she needed to retire from her role. Going away on some trip with Murphy and some hair brained accident happens to take her She could have already had who gets the house and business, written into her Last Will and Testament. Then she will always be on everyone's mind and hearts with the consequences of her decisions. As long as I have my mind, I will always think of Ms Cooper while I watch Y&R. I think there should be a picture or portrait of her that we can see throughout the run of Y&R, which I hope continues on for a long, long time!
May 14, 2013 9:30AM
The summer just wasn't a summer without my grandmother and the "Y&R". She just loved that character. Everyday she would watch Bob Barker, never the "Price is Right" it was Bob. Starting @ 10 and right on into watch "Katherine and Jewel (Jill)". No talking allowed, LOL. RIP Ms. Cooper, the Restless won't be the same without you.  
May 14, 2013 9:20AM

When I heard of Jeanne passing it instantly brought tears to my eyes.  It was like loosing your best friend.  She will be greatly missed.  I too have watched the show for many years and always enjoyed the fights between Jill and Kay.  RIP

May 14, 2013 9:00AM
I loved Mrs. C...I will truly miss her...please send her out with love and devotion that she so truly deserves....she was a star...RIP sweet star...
May 14, 2013 8:46AM
You will be truly missed Mrs. C. The Young and Restless won't be the same.
May 14, 2013 8:31AM
Jeanne Cooper will be missed by all (family. friends and fans) I will miss her on Y & R. She was truly a Duchess and a great lady . Rest in peace. Heaven needed another great actress and person. 
May 14, 2013 8:12AM
I have watched Y & R since it first aired and I thought Jeanne Cooper was the show!!  Her role as Katherine was phenomenal and to hear of her passing was sorrowful.  I keep expecting her to come down those stairs again.  She will be sorely missed.  R.I.P Mrs. C
May 14, 2013 8:12AM
I remember watching years ago when she had an actual facelift on the show and they showed it all!
May 14, 2013 7:55AM
I meant to say Adrianna. Katherine should leave her share of the Chancelor mansion to her. Jill would just love that :). Ms. Cooper was a great actress and I'm glad I was able to watch her for the past 20 years.
May 14, 2013 7:52AM
She should leave the her share of the house to Arianna and then her and Jill can begin the next generation of fighting.
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