Galen Gering Is Leaving ‘Days Of Our Lives.’ When Will His Last Episode Air?

Despite fan fears, Days of Our Lives is definitely not canceled. But things will look a bit different in Salem when the show’s 56th season kicks off later this year. A series of cast shakeups means that several actors are departing the venerable soap, including Galen Gering, who’s played Rafe Hernandez since 2008. 

Galen Gering is leaving ‘Days of Our Lives,’ but his last episode won’t air for months

On Feb. 13, Gering took to Instagram to thank his fans for their birthday wishes — and to make a big announcement. 

“I’ve always seen birthdays as a day of reflection, an opportunity to look back at where I’ve been and where I’m going,” he wrote. “So, it’s oddly befitting that today also happens to be my last day at Days.”

Gering went on to reminisce about his time on the show, including some of his more memorable storylines. “Onscreen I’ve fought for marriages and fought evil twins,” he wrote. “I’ve put people in prison and been imprisoned.”

“Offscreen, I’ve made friendships that I will have for a lifetime,” he added. “All the while, I’ve been so fortunate to have the love and support of the greatest fans in the world. I hope you know how thankful I am to have had you at my side. With that said, the journey continues and I hope to bring you along for the ride. Thanks for the memories Days of Our Lives. Like sands through the hourglass…”

Because Days of Our Lives tapes months in advance, it will be a while before fans have to say goodbye to Gering’s character. According to Deadline, he’ll continue to appear on the soap through the fall. 

Gering isn’t the only ‘Days’ cast member on the way out 

Freddie Smith and Chandler Massey
Freddie Smith and Chandler Massey |Chris Haston/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

Gering’s announcement comes shortly after two other cast members revealed they were also leaving the show. Freddie Smith and Chandler Massey — who play fan-favorite couple Sonny and Will — are also on the way out, and it wasn’t their decision to leave. 

“Chandler and I were released from our contracts,” Smith said in a video he posted to Twitter on Feb. 12. “Our last day is going to be Sept. 18, 2020.”

“It was not our choice,” he added. “Chandler and I were looking forward to staying on and signing a contract and keep[ing] the storyline going.”

Smith also alluded to some of the drama surrounding the series, particularly fears that it would be canceled. “There’s so much going on … I can only imagine that there was a big board of 35 actors, our headshots or something, and they were like, ‘Look, we gotta cut some people. So who’s it gonna be?’” he said. 

The actor, who’s worked on Days since 2011, didn’t reveal any spoilers about what happens to his character, but he did say he thought it was unlikely that he and Massey would be back, though in the soap opera world, anything is possible. 

Massey says he was ‘stunned’ to learn he’d been let go

In a Feb. 13 podcast conversation between Smith, Massey, and Smith’s wife Alyssa Tabit, the pair discussed the circumstances of their exit in more detail. “I was stunned,” Massey said of how he felt after learning his character was leaving the show when reading scripts for upcoming episodes, rather than being told directly by a producer. “I mean, I didn’t even know what to say. I mean, it just seems like our story was so… our story was unfinished and just happened so abruptly.”

“It just feels kind of sh*tty, to be honest, to be dropped like that,” he added. 

Fans of Sonny and Will — the first gay couple on Days — were crushed to hear the pair some dubbed “Wilson” would be leaving. Hundreds have signed a petition urging producers to reconsider their decision.