Alan Carter
April 01, 1994 AT 05:00 AM EST

He won two Outstanding Actor Daytime Emmys and countless popularity awards as courtly patriarch and physician Tom Horton on NBC’s Days of Our Lives. But Macdonald Carey, who died of cancer at his Beverly Hills home last week at age 81, will be remembered more for the important role he played in putting soap operas on the entertainment map. By joining Days when it premiered in 1965, Carey, already a star of more than 50 films-including Alfred Hitchcock’s Shadow of a Doubt-gave the decade-old genre its first big Hollywood name and with it a jolt of respectability. A native of Sioux City, Iowa, Carey never retired from Days. His last scene aired Feb. 9, but his mellifluous voice will continue to open each episode with the famous line ”Like sands through the hourglass, so are the days of our lives.”

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