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Former Search For Tomorrow Star, Lynn Loring, Has Died At 79

lynn loring

Lynn Loring/Journey to the Far Side of the Sun

Veteran actress and producer Lynn Loring passed away at the age of 80 in Tarzana, California on December 23, 2023, after a long battle with chronic illnesses. She began her career at the tender age of 3 as a child model before taking on the role of Patti Barron, Jo’s daughter (played by the late Mary Stuart), at the age of 7 on the daytime serial Search for Tomorrow. The news was recently confirmed by her son Chris Thinnes (with soap alum Roy Thinnes) in The Hollywood Reporter.

In The Beginning

Born Lynn Eileen Zimring on July 14, 1943, in Manhattan, New York, to her parents Charles Zimring, a shipyard owner, and Barbara Loring, a publicist. Loring made her television debut on such series as The Web, Starlight Theatre, and Hands of Mystery before signing on to the memorable role of Patti, which she held for a decade.

The busy young ingenue balanced her daytime role during the 50s by appearing on such iconic shows of the decade as Robert Montgomery Presents, The Jean Carroll Show, Studio One, The Man Behind the Badge, The Stranger, Omnibus, Kraft Theatre, and Armstrong Circle Theatre.

She exited the role of Patti in 1961 after graduating from high school. The young actress was ready to explore more challenging opportunities and took on roles in movies such as Special For Women: Mothers and Daughters, Splendor in the Grass, Pressure Point, and The Baby Makes Three.

Loring continued taking on roles in primetime in series such as Wagon Train, The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis, The Eleventh Hour, Gunsmoke, The Defenders, The Greatest Show on Earth, Daniel Boone, Perry Mason, The Alfred Hitchcock Hour, The F.B.I., The Big Valley, and The Wild, Wild West.

She married fellow thespian, Roy Thinnes (ex-Phil, General Hospital; ex-Sloan/Alex, One Life to Live) in 1967. The couple went on to star in The Invaders, Journey to the Far Side of the Sun, Black Noon, and The Horror at 37,000 Feet and shared two children, son Christopher Dylan, and daughter Casey Leigh.

A Behind-The-Scenes Move

In 1975, Loring transitioned away from acting to concentrate on being a mom. Eventually, she turned to a more production-based role as a casting director in the early 80s. Thinnes and Loring divorced in 1984. Later, she formed a successful partnership with the legendary Aaron Spelling leading up to her becoming president of MGM/UA Productions where she developed the TV series In the Heat of the Night with Carroll O’Connor (in which future Y&R star Christian LeBlanc would have a recurring role) based on the Oscar-winning film. She married attorney Michael Bergman in 1988.

The highest-ranking female executive at the time had her hand in such projects as The Return of the Mod Squad, The Best Little GIrl in the World (starring Jennifer Jason Leigh), Sizzle (Loni Anderson and John Forsythe), Mr. Mom (with Michael Keaton), Glitter (with David Birney and Morgan Brittany), The Making of a Male Model (starring the late Jon-Erik Hexum and Joan Collins), and Me and the Kid (with Danny Aiello).

Lynn Loring left behind an amazing body of work and a loving family. Soap Opera Digest sends sincere condolences to her beloved children, son, Christopher, and daughter, Casey, colleagues and castmates through the years and fans during this difficult time.