“Young and Restless” star Kristoff St. John was found dead at age 52. Police suspect he may have died after an alcohol overdose.
Co-stars past and present are remembering “Young and the Restless” actor Kristoff St. John, who died on Sunday after being found in a home in California. He was 52.
Eric Braeden, who plays the menacing Victor Newman on the show, tweeted that he had “no words” after the death of his “brotha” on Monday. The longtime soap star expanded on his thoughts in an interview with People magazine.
Braeden explained how St. John was impacted by the loss of his son Julian, who died of an apparent suicide in 2014 while in a mental health facility.
“He was deeply, deeply caring about his son and deeply wounded by his son’s death,” Braeden told the outlet.
“I think we all sort of tiptoed around what obviously weighed most heavily on his heart and his soul – and that is the death of his son,” Braeden said. “How do you discuss something so fundamentally tragic as that with even a friend? You don’t want to touch that wound.”
One of Braeden’s most vivid memories of his co-star was watching St. John deliver the eulogy at Julian’s funeral.
“That was one of the most moving moments I’ve ever been a part of,” he said.
Remembering his colleague’s warmth, Braeden said: “Colleagues loved him, the crew loved him, I don’t think a person that he worked with didn’t love Kristoff. He was just a great guy – funny, intelligent (and) always would listen to what anyone had to say about anything.”
Braeden also spoke of St. John’s professionalism and how he made working on a soap opera look easy.
“He knew his stuff,” he said. “Doing daytime is far harder than theatre or nighttime or film. Far harder. People have pages of dialogue to run and what we do as actors is we memorize it to the point that it becomes real. That sounds easy, but it’s difficult. He was a master at it. He did it with an ease, and he was a master at it – that’s all there is to it.”
And working with St. John was easy because of the actor’s innate instinct and empathy, his co-star pointed out.
“He was a wonderful actor to work with, he was so damn good and so instinctive as an actor,” he noted. “He had empathy. I think good actors all have empathy. He was just one of the good guys. You didn’t have to say much for him to understand. He was one of the essential pieces that made our show successful.”
When the cameras weren’t rolling, Braeden said, “You could talk sports with him and talk about the opposite sex with him. He was a man with enormous depth.”
“S.W.A.T.” star Shemar Moore, whose earliest acting credit is the soap, according to IMDb, also opened up to the entertainment news outlet about his former co-star. Moore debuted as Malcolm Winters, half-brother to St. John’s Neil Winters, in 1994.
“I’m raised an only child, but Kristoff is truly the closest thing to a brother and a brother’s love and a brother’s mentorship that I’ve ever known,” Moore told People.
“Without Kristoff St. John, there’s no Neil Winters. Without Neil Winters, there’s no opportunity for Malcolm Winters. And without Malcolm Winters, there’s no Shemar Moore,” the former “Criminal Minds” star added. “And if Shemar Moore didn’t get my chance to try on ‘The Young and the Restless,’ then I don’t sit here today with let alone this career or this life.”
“I would have life, but it would have been on a very different tangent and a very different lane,” Moore continued. “I will always give Kristoff that credit.”
Moore recalled how St. John was “there in the trenches with me,” rooting for him “day to day to day”.
“He didn’t have to, and many wouldn’t, but he rooted for me; he helped me; he held my hand,” Moore said, “he said, ‘Stick with me, bruh, I’m going to show you the way and then you do what you’re doing.’ “
Speaking to how St. John, the patriarch of the show’s only black family, paved the way for him, Moore said: “He opened doors for me and many… He opened doors and he was so committed to his craft. He always wanted to be better. He wanted to touch people and he did.”
Remembering St. John: Shemar Moore, Vivica A. Fox, Leslie Jones share memories
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