A Fond Farewell: A Tribute to ‘Falcon Crest’s Abby Dalton

Abby Dalton
Walt Disney Television via Getty Images Photo Archives

August 15, 1932–November 23, 2020

Television was always good to Abby Dalton during her seven-decade career.

The actress, born Gladys Marlene Wasden in Las Vegas, began appearing in Westerns like Maverick and The Rifleman in the late 1950s. She later starred as reliable Lt. Martha Hale, RN, opposite Jackie Cooper in the CBS comedy Hennesey (1959–62) and played Joey Bishop‘s cheeky wife, Ellie, on the NBC/CBS sitcom The Joey Bishop Show (1962–65).

The vibrant Dalton was also a welcome game show guest on Match Game, The Hollywood Squares, and Super Password. She experienced a career resurgence with the role of troubled Julia Cumson on CBS’s hit primetime soap Falcon Crest from 1981 to 1986.

Upon Dalton’s passing, costar Susan Sullivan tweeted, “The lovely Abby Dalton has left the stage. She was a mother, a wife, an accomplished actress and beautiful friend.”