Nneka Garland, ‘General Hospital’ Producer, Dies at 49

Nneka Garland, an Emmy-winning producer on “General Hospital,” died Monday in Burbank. She was 49.

She had suffered a heart attack at her home in Sherman Oaks, according to the Hollywood Reporter.

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Garland joined the ABC soap opera in 2001 as an executive assistant and spent the last 22 years working on the show.

In 2021, she became a producer of “General Hospital” and shared a Daytime Emmy win for outstanding drama series. That same year, show writers named recurring fictional character Nneka (Arlondriah Lenyéa) after Garland.

“It is with a sadness (and utter disbelief) that I must share the passing of our beloved producer, Nneka Garland,” wrote executive producer Frank Valentini in a message to cast and crew on Tuesday. “Universally adored by everyone at GH, Nneka brought out the best in all of us. Her endless patience and incredible empathy made her the person we went to for advice, a hug or just to see her beautiful reassuring smile. In big and small ways, her kindness touched and enriched each of us.”

Tabyana Ali and Nneka Garland
Tabyana Ali (who plays Trina on ‘General Hospital’) and Nneka Garland

“Nneka’s tireless efforts during Emmy season, the pandemic’s pressures and the day-to-day challenges of our shooting schedule never rattled or upset her,” Valentini also wrote. “She’d just shrug and say, ‘We’ll make it work, babe.’ And she did, always. Her absence will leave a hole in our lives — one that can only be filled by reflecting on all the wonderful memories that we’ve shared with her.”

“Besides performing her plethora of responsibilities in increasingly higher-ranking positions within ‘General Hospital,’ Nneka Garland was also the show shepherd for the Daytime Emmys,” said the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences in a statement. “For more than two decades, she worked with the administration team to create and submit the entries, promote judging, and work with on-site talent.”

“Nobody was more knowledgeable about the process, and nobody performed it with as wide a smile as Nneka. Every duty she performed-and there were so many-was done with a joy that radiated from within. The Daytime Emmys team mourns this sudden and tragic loss. We will miss her presence tremendously, and send our continued sympathies and condolences to Nneka’s family, friends and ‘GH’ team.”

The producer was born in Jersey City, N.J. on April 11, 1973 and was half-siblings with late rapper Tupac Shakur. She attended Hampton University in Virginia and graduated in 1995 with a degree in mass media.

Garland is survived by her father, William; her brothers Landon and Malik; and her sisters Tekerra and Leslie.


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