Macdonald Carey (born March 15, 1913 in Sioux City, Iowa; died March 21, 1994 in Beverly Hills, California) was an American actor best known for his role as the patriarch Dr. Tom Horton on NBC's soap opera Days of our Lives. For almost three decades, he was the show's central cast member.
He first made his career starring in various B-movies of the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s. He was known in many Hollywood circles as "King of the Bs", sharing the throne with his "queen", Lucille Ball. A most unlikely leading man, even in his earliest films, Carey surely owed what screen success he enjoyed to some mysterious "everyman" appeal that overshadowed his vapid appearance and seemingly diffident manner.
A successful radio actor and stage performer whose credits included the hit Broadway show "Lady in the Dark," Carey joined the Marines in 1943, staying in uniform for four years. He returned to Paramount in 1947 in Suddenly, It's Spring. He continued with Paramount into the 1950s; by this time he had slipped into more noticeable character roles. Carey played patriot Patrick Henry in John Paul Jones (1959). He also appeared in Blue Denim (1959), The Damned (1962), Tammy and the Doctor (1963), and End of the World (1977).
Carey also played a crusading attorney in the 1950s syndicated series Lock-Up. He played the starring role of attorney Herb Maris. A total of 78 episodes (then considered to be only two full seasons) were made 1959-1961, but apparently Carey did not appear in all of them.
For the remainder of his career, he played Tom Horton on Days of our Lives, from 1965 until his death from lung cancer in 1994.
He is most recognized today, over a decade after his passing, as the voice who recites the epigram each day before the program begins: "Like sands through the hourglass, so are the days of our lives". From 1966 to 1994, he would also intone, "This is Macdonald Carey, and these are the days of our lives." (After Carey's passing, the producers, out of respect for Carey's family, decided not to use the second part of the opening tagline). At each intermission, his voice also says "We will return for the second half of Days of our Lives in just a moment". Since the Horton family is still regarded as the core of Days of our Lives, his memory has been allowed to remain imprinted on the show by the voiceovers remaining intact. He also served as the voice-over for the very first PBS ident in which he said "This is PBS...The Public Broadcasting Service."
Carey wrote several books of poetry and a 1991 autobiography, "The Days of My Life." He is buried at Holy Cross Cemetery in Culver City, California, alongside his daughter Lisa, who died in infancy.
For his contribution to television, Macdonald Carey has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, at 6536 Hollywood Boulevard.