Kayla Brady has been on DAYS OF OUR LIVES since the ‘80s so it’s understandable if some viewers might not be aware of her entire dramatic history in Salem. Because there’s been a lot of drama over the decades! But don’t worry, that’s where we come in. Let us break it all down for you…
Who plays Kayla?
When the character was first introduced back in January 1982, Kayla was played by Catherine Mary Stewart. She exited the soap in December 1983, and it wasn’t until May 1986 that DAYS brought the character back and recast with actress Mary Beth Evans. Her initial run on the show lasted until May 1992 but she reprised her role again from June 2006 through February 2009. In 2010, Evans returned in a recurring capacity, was back on contract in 2015, and continues to play Kayla to this day.
How was Kayla introduced?
In 1982, Kayla first appeared as Roman Brady’s younger sister working as a nurse at University Hospital. She had a past relationship with Mike Horton and dated David Banning, but lost her virginity to Chris Kositchek. However, when Chris was unable to make a commitment, Kayla decided to leave town. She resurfaced in 1986 and established a low-income clinic on the riverfront while continuing to cross paths with Steve “Patch” Johnson. The pair embarked on various adventures as they fell in love. Kayla also helped Adrienne Johnson find work, not realizing she was Steve’s long-lost sister.
Who raped Kayla?
After going on the run when Steve was framed for shooting Harper Deveraux, Kayla and Steve returned to Salem and she was hired as Jack Deveraux’s nurse. Knowing Jack was in love with Kayla and dying, Steve pushed her towards him. After Kayla married Jack to raise his spirits, she was poisoned by Harper and Steve rescued her as she was near death. When Jack learned that Kayla had reunited with Steve, he raped her in a fit of rage. Although Kayla had him arrested, Jack was let off with only a slap on the wrist.
Kayla lost her hearing after being attacked and Steve learned sign language to communicate with her and help her recover her memories that Harper was the one who assaulted her. After Jack granted her a divorce, Kayla was wary of marrying Steve while deaf and underwent a risky surgery to restore her hearing before the couple finally tied the knot. After being gifted a mansion by Nick Corelli for helping him hide from the cops, Steve and Kayla discovered an old civil war diary and relived the love story of Emily and Gideon.
Marina Toscano appeared claiming to be Steve’s presumed-dead first wife, and Kayla urged him to help her solve her problems but later caught the couple in a compromising position while in Italy. Back home in Salem, Steve struggled to regain Kayla’s trust and was surprised to learn she was pregnant with his child. Unfortunately, their attempt to remarry was stymied when Kayla was arrested for Marina’s murder! She gave birth to Stephanie Johnson shortly before going to prison and upon learning of her daughter’s abduction by her nanny, Kayla broke out to track her down in Australia with Steve. Cleared of murder charges, Kayla remarried Steve but then he was presumed dead and she began a relationship with Shane Donovan. When he became paralyzed in the line of duty, Kayla helped him recover and their connection deepened, but she eventually chose to move to Los Angeles with her daughter to start a new life.
How did Kayla and Steve reunite?
Having completed medical school, Kayla returned to Salem for Frankie and Jennifer Horton’s wedding and stuck around when Steve showed up at the church very much alive, but with amnesia! Kayla was crushed he had no memory of their love, especially when he took up with Billie Reed, but a series of events ending with a trip to a cabin where they once hid out together finally brought his memories back and they were reunited.
After Steve was brainwashed into doing Stefano DiMera’s bidding, Kayla did her best to break through the programming and bring him back to normal. While discussing the idea of having another child, the couple took in Philip Kiriakis’ son, Tyler, who had been abandoned at the hospital by the surrogate mother. After he became ill, social services took the boy away and Kayla and Steve were suspected of poisoning him, but it turned out to be a rare genetic disorder. Steve, Kayla, and Philip all agreed to have Tyler be brought up by another foster family.
Kayla and Steve supported Stephanie when she was raped and traveled to Ireland to help Shawn Brady find the sister he believed was dead. Kayla was happy to learn she was pregnant again but heartbroken when the plane crash on the way home to Salem took the life of her father, Shawn. Further stresses — including worrying about Steve’s crazy ex-girlfriend Ava Vitali — caused Kayla to have problems with her pregnancy and she eventually went into early labor and delivered Joseph “Joey” Johnson. After being accidentally shot by Hope Brady, Ava nearly died but recovered after life-saving surgery. She and Steve decided to leave Salem with Joey for a new life elsewhere.
Why did Kayla return to Salem?
In 2010, Kayla briefly visited home to pay her respects to an ailing Alice Horton, and in 2011 returned admitting that she and Steve were having problems because he wanted adventure and rejoined the ISA. The couple divorced and Kayla took over as chief of staff at Salem University Hospital. In 2015, Steve returned to Salem and so did Joey. However, soon enough, Ava resurfaced wanting Steve back and abducted Kayla. After she was rescued, Joey murdered a hospitalized Ava. After remarrying Steve, Kayla welcomed his son, Tripp Dalton, into the family, but he was after revenge for his mother, Ava’s murder.
Tripp sabotaged Kayla at the hospital to get her suspended and eventually attempted to murder her with his own hands. Thankfully, Steve talked him down and Joey confessed and was sent to prison for killing Ava. Next, Steve began having trouble with his eyesight and eventually went blind because John Black was forced to poison him. Desperate to help Steve regain his sight, Kayla approached Stefan DiMera, who agreed to provide a bionic eye in exchange for Kayla digging up dirt on Kate Roberts. Kayla fulfilled her end of the bargain and Steve had his eyesight restored, but then he was arrested for espionage because the eye was secretly being used as a spy camera without his knowledge!
Why was Kayla with Justin?
Having been sent divorce papers by Steve, Kayla set about putting her life back together and worked at the hospital performing Julie Horton’s heart transplant among other medical procedures. After a year passed in the blink of an eye, Kayla was dating Justin Kiriakis, having grown close to him following Adrienne’s death. Things got complicated when Steve returned to Salem but got even worse when it turned out that he had been implanted with a microchip that turned him into Stefano! “Stevano” abducted Kayla and ransomed her off to Justin but it was all just a ruse to get Marlena in the end. After Steve had been subdued, Kayla performed a risky operation to remove the chip and restore him to normal.
After filling Steve in on the events of the past year, Kayla was drawn to him but he insisted she stay with Justin. Although she accepted Justin’s proposal, hearing that Steve still loved her inspired Kayla to dump her fiancé at the altar. Finally reunited, Kayla and Steve were surprised when Tripp returned to Salem to finish school there. Unfortunately, the couple clashed when Tripp was accused of raping Allie Horton.
Thankfully, Tripp’s name was cleared and Steve and Kayla reconnected and tied the knot again. She urged Steve to be nicer to Bonnie Lockhart, because Justin deserved to be happy, and supported their wedding. However, she wasn’t as eager to forgive Ava, despite her insisting she’d changed her ways. The couple then teamed up to go undercover at a convent to locate Kristen DiMera only to find themselves her captives on a private island! They managed to escape along with the other prisoners, but Kristen once again gave them the slip!
Stay tuned to DAYS to see how Kayla’s story continues!