Steve Burton leaving ‘General Hospital’ … in nicest way possible

When you play a role for an astounding 21 years, it can be pretty difficult to say goodbye — but this is what Steve Burton is now doing with “General Hospital.”

While he even himself admits that the timing may not be perfect when it comes to his character’s story, the actor gave a pretty lengthy explanation for his goodbye to TV Guide — one that had nothing to do with money, creative differences, or the sorts of problems that you typically see involved with daytime drama losing a beloved cast member:

“I’ve been through 21 years of ups and downs with GH— regime changes, cast and crew changes, budget cuts, shakeups of one kind or another, and it’s been nothing but a huge positive in my life and for my family. I have no complaints, no negative feelings at all. But it’s time to go. I’m going to take some time off and do nothing but relax, just enjoy life a little bit with my wife and kids. I’ve bought a home in Tennessee, way out in the country outside Nashville. [Laughs] Probably too far out in the country! I’ve been talking about leaving GH and moving there for the last seven years. The timing was never right and then the economy crashed and I couldn’t sell my house in California. I went there many years ago when I did the movie The Last Castle and loved it. Tennessee reminded me of growing up in Ohio. The people are nice, it’s family oriented and, now that my kids are 6 and almost 9, I want to get them planted. My contract was coming up at GH so we put the house up for sale again and it went in, like, eight weeks. That opened the door for me to leave GH.”

For those of you worried that Burton’s story will not get the proper conclusion that it deserves, there is some reason to have hope — even though he says that his last tape day for the time being is September 25, he is willing to stay longer if producers want to make sure that they have the right story for him mapped out to satisfy the fans. Ultimately, though, it is safe to say that you are going to see Jason Morgan gone from your TV screens at some point by the end of this year.

What’s your reaction to this news? Be sure to share your thoughts below, and click here to find out more about another star of “General Hospital” who has a busy schedule this fall.

Photo: ABC

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