Veteran stage and screen actor Gerald Castillo, who appeared in major TV series including “Saved By the Bell,” “General Hospital,” “Hill Street Blues,” “M*A*S*H” and “Dallas,” died May 4 at his home in Houston. He was 90.
Known for his work as Major Slater on “Saved by the Bell” and Judge Davis Wagner on “General Hospital,” Castillo developed a following for his roles in the two series.
Born in Chicago on Dec. 23, 1932, Gerald studied acting and stage direction at the Goodman Theater. Following his education, he acted on stages all across the nation, performing opposite Sherman Hemsley, Rita Moreno, Jessica Tandy, James Broderick and Jeanne Crain. After performing with Hemsley, “The Jeffersons” star convinced Castillo to pursue a film and TV career in Los Angeles.
Castillo then appeared in several feature films, including “Delta Force II,” “Kinjite,” “Death Wish IV,” “State of Emergency,” “Through Naked Eyes,” and “Above Suspicion.”
Castillo also guest starred in several TV series, including “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation,” “Hill Street Blues,” “M*A*S*H,” “Dallas,” “Knots Landing,” “The Jeffersons,” “Night Court,” “Simon and Simon” and many more.
The screen and stage performer also worked as a stage director at numerous theaters in Los Angeles and Ventura County, including the Santa Paula Theater.
Castillo’s wife of 36 years, Danya Quinn-Castillo noted, “Many of the actors he worked with remember him as a charismatic and insightful director who would jingle the change in his pocket while he pondered a scene, then leap onto the stage to work out the blocking or whisper in an actor’s ear. He was revered for providing the support and guidance that allowed actors to fully develop their characters on stage.”
In 2012 he retired from acting and moved to Houston.
He was predeceased by his only child, daughter, Lisa Palmere.
Castillo is survived by his wife, grandson Brian Palmere, granddaughter Stephanie Palmere, great-grandson Allen Palmere and his twin brother, Bernie Castillo.
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