Legendary ‘Days of Our Lives’ Actor Dies


The legendary John Clarke, who played Mickey Horton on Days of Our Lives, has died at the age of 88.

Days of Our Lives stars on Hollywood Walk of Fame

Early Life

Clarke was born in South Bend, Indiana, on April 14, 1931. His father was in the military, so he went to several schools in California and Virginia. He spent time in the Staunton Military Academy and graduated from high school in Tokyo.

He went to the University of California in Los Angeles to get his bachelor of arts in theater. Clarke also served as a sergeant for the U.S. Air Force in the Korean War. During his service, he was a member of the Air Force Varsitones, an entertainment touring group for military personnel.

Acting Career

Clarke had a successful acting career. His film roles included parts in The Satan Bug, Judgement at Nuremberg, Man Missing, Burma Patrol, and It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad World. He also acted in several stage productions including The King and I, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, and Oklahoma! He performed as the leading man in more than 75 plays at the Tenthouse Theater in Chicago, IL.

He also guest-starred and co-starred in many television roles on shows like Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman, Maverick, Have Gun Will Travel, The Twilight Zone, Gunsmoke, and Petticoat Junction.

Clarke’s most famous role, however, was certainly Mickey Horton on Days of Our Lives from 1965 to 2004. He was nominated for the 1979 Daytime Emmy Award for outstanding actor in a daytime drama series for his work on the show. He won the Daytime Emmys lifetime achievement award in 2004.

In spite of his busy career, Clark also spent a lot of time with family. His obituary reads, “Above all, family life was almost most important to John and his wife Patty.”


Clarke had been experiencing declining health after a stroke in 2007. Sadly, he passed away on Tuesday from complications of pneumonia. The family reports that his death was peaceful.

He is survived by his wife, Patty, and two children, as well as three grandchildren. His daughter Heidi Clarke, passed away in 1994 from a heart tumor.

As his obituary affirms, “John’s greater-than-life personality will leave a lasting impression on all his family and friends who love him.”

The family is asking for donations to the Heidi Clarke Scholarship Fund at California Institute of the Arts instead of floral gifts. Donations can be made by calling (661) 253-7827.