‘Grease’ Actress Susan Buckner Passes Away at 72

New York Post via YouTube

Susan Buckner, beloved for her role as Patty Simcox in the iconic 1978 musical Grease, has passed away at the age of 72. The news was confirmed by Melissa Berthier, a family publicist, who stated that Susan passed away peacefully on May 2, surrounded by her loved ones. No cause of death was disclosed.

Susan’s daughter, Samantha Mansfield, expressed her grief, describing her mother as “magic” and expressing gratitude for their close bond. Born in Seattle in 1952, Susan gained recognition after winning the Miss Washington pageant in 1971 and subsequently representing the state at the Miss America competition.

Transitioning into entertainment, Susan became part of The Golddiggers, an all-female singing and dancing group featured on The Dean Martin Show. Her appearances extended to popular shows like The Mac Davis Show, Sonny and Cher, and The Brady Bunch Variety Hour.

However, it was her role as the bubbly cheerleader Patty Simcox in Grease that cemented her status as a familiar face in American households. Her spirited performance alongside Olivia Newton-John left a mark, with her iconic cheer for Rydell High School becoming a memorable moment: “Do the splits, give a yell! Show a little spirit for Old Rydell! Way to go, red and white! Go Rydell, fight, fight, fight!”

While continuing her acting career into the 1980s with appearances in shows like The Love Boat and films such as Police Academy 6: City Under Siege, Grease remained Susan’s defining role. She later stepped back from show business to focus on raising her two children.

In her later years, Susan directed children’s theater at a Florida elementary school and teaching dance at a gym in Coral Gables. She is survived by her children Samantha Mansfield and Adam Josephs, grandchildren Oliver, Riley, Abigail, and Ruby, as well as her sister Linda, daughter-in-law Noel Josephs, son-in-law Adam Mansfield, and longtime partner Al.

Take a look back on her fun scenes in ‘Grease,’ and also pay tribute to another ‘Grease’ star who passed away not too long ago–it’s all in the video below.

Rest in peace, Susan! What was your favorite scene featuring Susan Buckner in “Grease”?