Inside Nancy Lee Grahn's life from sudden health scare to 26 years on GH

Darcy Rafter August 19, 2022
Inside Nancy Lee Grahn's life from sudden health scare to 26 years on GH
Photo by Francis Specker/CBS via Getty Images

Nancy Lee Grahn has become a soap opera veteran after 37 years in daytime television and as usual, fans of General Hospital are always keen to know more about the actor behind their favourite character.

Grahn’s talent has not gone unnoticed, after all, she has starred in more than 1,000 episodes of GH and featured in an array of storylines over her 26-year tenure playing Alexis Davis. 

Read on to discover more about Nancy Lee Grahn from her lengthy tenure on television to life as a single mom…

GENERAL HOSPITAL – “General Hospital” airs Monday-Friday, on ABC (check local listings). (Nick Agro via Getty Images) NANCY LEE GRAHN

Raising her daughter as a single mom

Just like her GH character, Grahn is also a single mother and her only child is daughter Katherine Grace, who was born in 1998. 

Nancy Lee Grahn has always been close with her daughter and after noticing that she was exhibiting a slight change in behaviour, she took Katherine to the UCLA Anxiety Disorder Clinic. It is there that she was diagnosed with OCD and Tic Disorder. She was then put into treatment and went through clinical trials for eight years along with therapy.

In fact, Grahn must be rather fed up with hospitals, not only does she spend a lot of time on the set of General Hospital, but she has also been in hospital recently, due to a recent health scare.

Grahn’s health has declined due to a painful cyst that was causing her excruciating pain for more than six months. However, after having surgery to remove the cyst, she has been pain-free and didn’t even take painkillers, what a trooper!

Photo by Mathew Imaging/WireImage

Nancy is a keen political activist

Grahn is always open to talking politics and she often speaks her mind, her website even includes a “Politics” page where the actress shares her thoughts.

Shortly after the Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v. Wade, Grahn appeared at the 2022 Daytime Emmys wearing pro-choice accessories including a “Bans Off Our Bodies” bag. She also had the words “reproductive freedom” written on her chest.

Grahn told People that she knew what she was doing may be considered controversial but also knew that she had to advocate for what she believed: “There’s a fraction of this audience that are very angry at me, and that’s the risk I’m willing to take. I feel that my voice as a citizen trumps being an actor.”

Photo by Amy Sussman/Getty Images

Nancy Lee Grahn’s career explored

Grahn has been in the spotlight since 1978 when she made her debut in the soap opera One Life to Live, starring as Beverly Wilkes for 200 episodes up until 1982. The actress has also acclaimed credits in TV episodes including The Incredible Hulk, Magnum PI, Knight Rider, Murder, She Wrote, Melrose Place and Castle.

Nancy doesn’t just dabble in TV she has also featured in a string of movies, including Obsessed with a Married Woman, Kids Don’t Tell and Perry Mason: The Case of the Glass Coffin.

All her hard work in the acting industry has earned her a Daytime Emmy for Santa Barbara in 1989 and another for General Hospital in 2012. In fact, her work on GH has also seen her win three Soap Opera Digest Awards.

Nancy is ‘re-valuating her future’

Nancy, 66, doesn’t only have talent on-screen but she also creates magic when she touches pen to paper. At the minute, when she’s not causing chaos in Port Charles, she’s busy writing her autobiography.

As a soap actress, Nancy has a very busy schedule, but she recently took some time out to reflect on her life and career. The star has been in the business so long that she will undoubtedly have some tea to spill and it is coming out in abundance as Nancy has already found herself 120 pages into telling her story.

Addressing her fans, she wrote to her Facebook page: “Hi friends, It’s been a while. I spent the month of July on a lake in WI. It rebooted and recalibrated me. I’m different now in ways that I can’t quite explain. Prior to that, in the last few months, I was hit with some life-altering realizations that truly forced me to re-evaluate my future, my career, my purpose, my value, what I will accept and what I won’t in regard to that and why.”

Photo by Amy Sussman/Getty Images
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Darcy is an experienced journalist passionate about celebrity culture and entertainment. After gaining a degree in Media and Communications at Goldsmiths University she has also become a social media specialist, always keeping informed on the latest trends. With almost five years of experience in media, her expertise is analysing platforms such as Instagram, Twitter and TikTok. When she's not tracking the latest trending content, she’s watching films and eating lots of chocolate.