Original Santa Barbara Leading Man Dane Witherspoon Dead at 56 (VIDEO)

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The star-crossed, forbidden love of Kelly Capwell and Joe Perkins launched NBC's short-lived, cult fave soap opera Santa Barbara in 1984. Fans of the show couldn't decide who was more beautiful, Robin Wright, who played heiress Kelly Capwell, or Dane Witherspoon, who starred as her wrongfully-accused-of-murder beau Joe Perkins.

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Fellow SB hunk A Martinez (ex-Cruz) had the difficult task of announcing Witherspoon's death via Facebook. He was 56. Watch a clip of Witherspoon, Wright and Louise Sorel, who played SB's sex-crazed socialite Augusta Lockridge, after the jump!