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What These Killed Off NCIS Actors Are Doing Today

After more than 15 years, the police procedural series NCIS is still going strong. The NCIS crew has investigated countless crimes involving Navy and Marine personnel, and with investigator Leroy Jethro Gibbs leading this elite response team and their allies, they've dealt with everything from high-level terrorist threats to interpersonal relationship problems. Over the course of its long run, the show has attracted quite a following, and it consistently ranks as one of the most popular shows in the United States. 

Like any other crime drama that's been on the air for a while, NCIS has racked up quite a body count since it premiered. Everyone working with the NCIS team knows that their life could be on the line — and some have paid the ultimate price in pursuit of justice. Let's take a walk down NCIS memory lane and see what these actors got up to after their characters met untimely ends.

Sasha Alexander (Caitlin Todd)

Former Secret Service Agent Caitlin Todd (Sasha Alexander) was recruited to work for the NCIS team right after she resigned from the Service. She was extremely perceptive and could easily craft detailed psychological profiles on suspects. But in season 2, Todd was caught off guard while her team cleared a warehouse where a terrorist cell was hiding out, and she was killed by Ari Haswari, a sniper secretly working as a Mossad double agent. Although Todd is gone, her legacy lives on for the team, and Alexander went on to enjoy continued success in her acting career.

Alexander is best known for starring as medical examiner Dr. Maura Isles on another crime drama, Rizzoli & Isles. She also had a recurring role on Shameless as Helene Runyan, and had supporting roles in the films Yes Man and He's Just Not That Into You. In 2007, she married writer and director Edoardo Ponti, and the couple now has two children, Leonardo and Lucia.

Lauren Holly (Jenny Shepard)

Lauren Holly got her big break in the early 1990s with roles in Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story and Dumb and Dumber, and for a short time, she was even married to Jim Carrey. In 2005, Holly joined the cast of NCIS as Jenny Shepard, the new Director of NCIS — who also just happened to be Gibbs' ex-girlfriend. Shepard's drive to succeed at her job was partially motivated by her desire for revenge: her late father, a U.S. Army colonel, was killed by an arms dealer. 

Years before joining the NCIS team, Shepard and Gibbs were tasked with the responsibility of killing a Russian couple for their criminal activities, but Shepard let the woman, Natasha, go free. Shepard was murdered when Natasha eventually avenged her lover's death by sending assassins after her.

Holly's time on NCIS is over, but she's continued to enjoy steady acting work. She had a long-running role as Dr. Betty Rogers on the mystery series Motive, and she played Lynn Harper in the show Designated Survivor. More recently, she joined the Netflix series Tiny Pretty Things, in which she plays the head of an elite ballet academy.

Duane Henry (Clayton Reeves)

Before appearing on NCIS as Clayton Reeves, Duane Henry was homeless and desperate for work in Los Angeles. Having just moved to the U.S. from London, he went on countless auditions before finally landing the role that would change his life: M16 Agent Clayton Reeves on NCIS. He was eventually promoted to a regular cast member, but after the death of former showrunner Gary Glasberg, who created his character, the writers weren't quite sure what to do with Henry. Henry and the producers finally decided that it was time for Reeves' arc to end, and Reeves died protecting Abby Sciuto from a mugger. 

NCIS opened doors in the entertainment industry for Henry, and he remains grateful he got the chance to work on the show; as he put it, "It was a life changer, a game changer for me, and something I'll take with me forever and ever." In 2019, he had a role as a Talos-Kree soldier in Captain Marvel — he's come a long way from scraping by and sleeping on couches. 

Jessica Steen (Agent Paula Cassidy)

Special Agent Paula Cassidy (Jessica Steen) joined the NCIS team to help out after Caitlin Todd's death — but little did she know that her decision to join would lead her to a similar fate. Even if she had known, she wouldn't have turned it down. Cassidy was basically fearless — after all, she worked as an interrogator at Guantanamo Bay. She was a selfless woman who never backed down in the face of danger, and when a suicide bomber threatened her colleagues, she sacrificed herself to save their lives. 

Steen's time on NCIS was short, but she's had no trouble securing continuous work in TV after departing the show. Since 2007, Steen has played Lisa Stillman on the popular Canadian drama Heartland. She also had a recurring role as Donna Sabine on another police procedural, Flashpoint. In addition, Steen played Kat Baines on the comedy series Those Damn Canadians, and she's made guest appearances on shows like Grey's Anatomy and Charmed

Alan Dale (NCIS Director Tom Morrow)

Even after former NCIS Director Tom Morrow (Alan Dale) retired from his job, he still felt a certain responsibility towards his old team — and it was his commitment to the job he'd already left that ultimately put him in danger. While in retirement, Morrow got involved with the team once again to assist them in tracking down an M16 agent who escaped from prison. He was murdered in his own home by Trent Kort, a traitor and former CIA operative.

Once Morrow's time on NCIS was up, Dale joined the cast of the drama Dynasty as Joseph Anders. Dale got his start on the popular Australian soap opera Neighbours, where he spent years playing Jim Robinson. Although Dale was grateful for the opportunity, he left the show on bad terms, saying, "When we decided that we hated each other — the company and me — one of the things the company did was to market everything they could out of us and pay us nothing." He must have decided to let bygones by bygones; he made two guest appearances on the show as Robinson in 2018 and 2019. 

Tim Kelleher (Christopher Pacci)

Christopher Pacci (Tim Kelleher) was the kind of guy anyone would be lucky to work with — he was hard-working, dedicated, and genuinely cared about seeking the truth. He wasn't in the job for personal glory or excitement, he just wanted justice. While digging into the mysterious death of Hamilton Voss, who stole millions before perishing in a car accident, Pacci didn't realize how vulnerable he was. Voss had actually faked his own death, and he shot Pacci when he realized that Pacci was on his tail. 

Post-NCIS, Kelleher has continued acting and become a published writer. He had supporting roles in Inception and Seven Pounds, and he also wrote, directed, and produced the documentary The Creed: What Christians Profess, and Why It Ought to Matter.

Muse Watson (Mike Franks)

Mike Franks (Muse Watson), the man who mentored Gibbs, was a huge influence on the NCIS team. Even after moving to Mexico, he still returned from time to time to give Gibbs a hand with difficult cases. While helping Gibbs track down the serial killer Jonas Cobb, Franks found Cobb outside Gibbs' house. Franks died of a stab wound in order to save Gibbs; naturally, Gibbs was heartbroken when he discovered that his mentor and friend had sacrificed himself to protect him.

His days as Mike Franks over, Watson took a short hiatus from acting. He eventually returned and appeared in the horror film the Dead Ones, and later landed a role on the miniseries Diary of a Lunatic. Watson's daughter has autism, and he has become an outspoken advocate for children like her. He regularly speaks at schools to educate people on autism and works with organizations dedicated to helping autistic children. 

Matt Jones (Ned Dorneget)

Ned Dorneget's (Matt Jones) time with the NCIS team didn't last long, but he was an integral part of the crew. He temporarily worked on the Major Case Response Team and occasionally returned to help out when his services were needed. It was in the course of duty that Dorneget ultimately perished, dying in an explosion while in Cairo working to thwart a bomb threat.

Since his exit from NCIS, Jones has stayed quite busy. But despite his many acting commitments, you may not have seen his face onscreen lately — he's done lots of voice work on various animated shows, including Sanjay and Craig, Pig Boat Banana Cricket, Let's Get Physical, and F is for Family. He also had a regular role as Baxter on the series Mom. Jones also plays Badger in the highly anticipated film El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie

Liza Lapira (Agent Michelle Lee)

The death of Special Agent Michelle Lee (Liza Lapira) shocked many NCIS viewers. She served on the Major Case Response Team — but she was hiding a major secret. She was actually a mole, leaking classified and sensitive information. When she was found out, she confessed, but she said she was only doing it to save her sister, who was being held captive. She sacrificed herself to stop her handler, Ted Bankstan, from escaping — he used her as a human shield, and she gave Gibbs the signal to shoot through her.

Lapira has had several roles in popular films, including Trinh in the first Fast & Furious movie and Liz in Crazy, Stupid, Love. Later, she even made a guest appearance on the spinoff NCIS: New Orleans, as a different character, Araminta Jax. More recently, Lapira played Mia in the Netflix series Unbelievable, based on the true story of two female detectives investigating an assault case. 

Matthew Willig (Special Agent Simon Cade)

Former football player turned actor Matthew Willig played Simon Cade, an NCIS special agent who managed to survive a shooting and came back to the job. He finally met his end when his team was lead into a trap by the "Port-to-Port Killer," who shot Cade — and this time, Cade succumbed to his injuries. Cade's imposing frame may have made him look intimidating, but unfortunately, he was not invincible. 

Willig appeared in the comedy We're the Millers as the drug dealer One-Eye. He also had a recurring role as Lash on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., and was cast as Happy in Birds of Prey: And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn, which stars Margot Robbie returning to her role as Harley and following her character's adventures after leaving the Joker and assembling a new crew of anti-heroes to take down her latest adversary.

Rafi Silver (Qasim Naasir)

When Special Agent Eleanor Bishop (Emily Kaiser Wickersham) met translator Qasim Naasir (Rafi Silver), their chemistry was immediately apparent. The two began dating and envisioning a future together, but the happily ever after they were imagining was never meant to be. Naasir proposed to Bishop, and she didn't feel ready to give him an answer right away — but she was preparing to say yes. Before she could tell him she'd made up her mind, he was killed in a drive-by shooting, and their love story came to a tragic end. It was definitely unexpected, and Bishop was heartbroken — along with much of the audience. 

Since concluding his stint on NCIS, Silver has gone on to do voice work on American Dad and make guest appearances on The Nine Lives of Claw and Madam Secretary. You can also catch him guest-starring as Finn Nowak on the NBC series Manifest

Alimi Ballard (Gayne Levin)

Agent Gayne Levin (Alimi Ballard) also met his end while working on the Port-to-Port killer case. In fact, he was working alongside Simon Cade. They both walked into the trap set by the killer, and they paid for their mistake with their lives. Ballard had a relatively small role on NCIS, but he has gone on to work on some very interesting projects since leaving the show.

Not long after wrapping up his run on NCIS, Ballard went on to play Officer Kevin Crawford on CSI. (Fun fact — he also played an unnamed music producer on the series before landing this role.) Later, he played Dr. Robert DuBois on the drama Queen Sugar, which gave him the opportunity to work with creator and acclaimed director Ava DuVernay. He's also made guest appearances on shows like Elementary and The Good Doctor, as well as playing the recurring role of Marcel Dumas on Queen of the South

Lucas Black (Christopher LaSalle)

Lucas Black was introduced as Special Agent Christopher LaSalle on the original NCIS series, and he was also one of the cast members on the spin-off NCIS: New Orleans. Sadly, in season 6 of NCIS: New Orleans, LaSalle was shot while trying to avenge the death of his brother. Fans never expected that he would meet his own end in the process.

Black was such an integral part of NCIS: New Orleans that fans worried it wouldn't feel like the same show without him. Some even wondered if bad blood behind the scenes had prompted him to leave. Thankfully, the truth is much less dramatic. As it turns out, Black just wanted to spend more time with his wife and kids. "This job isn't easy for me," Black explained. "There's a lot of priorities in my life that get sacrificed for me to be here. But it's time for me to focus on those priorities in my life."