Patrick Duffy had starring roles in both “Dallas” and “Step by Step” on television in the 1980s and 1990s. Since then, he has amassed 80 additional acting credits and directed several films. Duffy recently announced his relationship with fellow actress Linda Purl from “Happy Days,” which came as a surprise after the couple had been friends for years.
The actor expressed his delight at their budding romance, but he also mentioned his sadness before this newfound happiness, having lost several close friends.
Before attending college, Duffy’s acting career was derailed when he ruptured his vocal cords due to vocal abuse, lack of rest, and excessive drinking, resulting in losing his voice for two decades.
He did not let this deter him from pursuing his dreams. Instead, he adapted by teaching mime and movement classes and interpreting ballet and opera performances for groups throughout Washington State. It took Duffy five months of daily chanting as part of his Buddhist faith to fully recover his voice.
Duffy rose to prominence in the late 1970s as the star of Dallas, a drama about the Ewing dynasty’s efforts to maintain control and authority over their vast oil company. Despite his success on the show, his career outside of it struggled until Rosser stepped in and provided him with much-needed support and guidance. Over time, they became close friends, and she became someone he could rely on, eventually introducing him to Buddhism. Despite all odds, Duffy managed to stay afloat with his newfound faith guiding him through difficult times.
Patrick Duffy’s portrayal of Bobby Ewing in the 1986 television series “Dallas” was the pinnacle of his acting career. Tragically, his parents, Kenneth Miller and Sean Wentz were murdered inside their Montana pub by two 19-year-old gunmen. This heinous crime surprised Duffy, who described his parents as decent and social in Closer Weekly. He remembered Miller removing them from the bar after they had been drinking elsewhere, only to return seeking vengeance on him. Due to the lack of other customers, they shot Duffy’s parents instead.
This traumatic experience shaped Duffy’s perspective on his career and life. After failing to find his ideal single-starring venue and having to return for Season 8 of “Dallas,” he realized he had made a mistake. He regretted leaving “Dallas” earlier due to the show’s enormous popularity at the time, hoping to pursue other projects instead. Even so, he never wholly dismissed the possibility of a return if it could lead to an incredible story for Bobby Ewing in 2021, as he revealed to TV Insider in April of that year.
Kenneth Miller and Sean Wentz were apprehended shortly after murdering Patrick Duffy’s parents, leaving their family and friends stunned. They were convicted of murder in 1987 and sentenced to 75 years in prison, plus an additional 30 years for robbery and assault. Wentz received ten years in prison after it was revealed that he was the triggerman. Duffy’s sister, Joanne, expressed her disappointment that they were not executed, and the police officer agreed. Patrick finally found peace, as his sister was determined to see justice served.
To cope with such tragedy, Patrick turned to Buddhism, which his wife, Carlyn Rosser, had introduced. Initially seeking Buddhism to sleep with her, it would eventually become a core component of his life; Nichiren Buddhism assisted him vocally and mentally in understanding pain and suffering.
He never felt distant from his parents, even after their deaths, because his 15 years of Buddhist practice taught him to appreciate life and loss more deeply. Patrick became accountable for his pains due to this experience, understanding that karma was manifesting under these conditions.
Patrick Duffy was deeply affected by the 2005 death of his on-screen mother, Barbara Bel Geddes. He told Entertainment Weekly that despite her outstanding pedigree, she had a humble nature and was very well-liked on set—she was referred to as “BBG” (mama). Even though he recognized that the revival of “Dallas” without Bel Geddes was not the same, he tried to find solace by visiting her gravestone.
In 2017, the actor also suffered a significant loss when his wife of over 40 years, Carlyn Rosser, died of cancer at the age of 77. After her death, he took to Twitter to express his grief, but he also found peace by honoring what she would have wanted for him – to enjoy life. Patrick has kept himself busy with his sons Padraic (writer/director) and Conor (actor) (actor).
Recently, the former “Step by Step” actress Linda Purl, who co-starred in ‘Doomsday Mom,’ found love again. They bonded over Zoom calls during a national lockdown, discussing their past loves and histories while listening to music together – essentially getting to know each other without outside influences. Patrick expressed gratitude for having the opportunity to experience something unexpected like this later in life.
Despite all the tragedy and heartbreak, he’s experienced, Patrick Duffy is grateful for everything it has given him. He frequently talks about making the best of every situation and enjoying just being alive, allowing himself to be surprised and taken aback by all the beautiful moments life has to offer – no matter how small or insignificant they may appear.