Michael Sutton Former 'General Hospital' Star

The actor played the key role of Stone Cates, a teenager who died of AIDS

Robin and Stone
Robin (Kimberly McCullough) and Stone (Michael Sutton) - Love in the Season of AIDS. ABC, Inc.

Michael Sutton is best known to daytime television audiences as Stone Cates, a role he played on "General Hospital" from 1993 to 1995. The first love of Robin Scorpio, daughter of Anna Devane and Robert Scorpio, Stone died of AIDS, but not before infecting Robin with HIV. It was a highly controversial plot development at the time but put the topic of HIV front-and-center with daytime television audiences.

Stone Cates Lasting Impact on 'General Hospital'

Unlike other daytime characters who are killed off, Stone has been a frequent topic of discussion among characters on the show in the years since his death. Robin, in particular, has frequently talked about him as her first love. She also has reflected on the long-lasting impact that her relationship with Stone had on her life, and it was that experience that prompted her to pursue a career as a doctor.

And in one of the longest stretches between a character's death and his reappearance, Stone's spirit visited Robin in 2010, when she was trapped in a well. Sutton reprised his role for a two-day encore, which was a huge hit with longtime fans of the show. 

Here's a little bit about the actor who played this small role that still resonates in the "General Hospital" universe.

Michael Sutton Acting Career

Born on June 18, 1970, Sutton is a Los Angeles native and a graduate of Cal State University.

 

Sutton was nominated for a Daytime Emmy in 1996 for his portrayal of the doomed Stone. He was among the first actors in daytime television to portray an HIV-positive character.

Since his role on "General Hospital" ended, Sutton has focused mainly on his public relations career, but also has done some scattered roles here and there.

His other acting credits include such films as "Inventing the Abbots," "Error in Judgment," "Wanted," "Dark Nova," "American Intellectuals," "Against All Evidence" and "Love, Hollywood Style."

He appeared in the 2000 TV movie "Dark Prince: The True Story of Dracula." And in 2014, he played Elliott in the film  "37."

Michael Sutton Public Relations Career

While still on "General Hospital," Sutton began to follow his father into the field of public relations. His father's firm, Freeman & Sutton, handled public relations for such stars as Martin Lawrence, Burt Reynolds, Christopher Walken, Elijah Wood, Patty Duke and Oprah Winfrey, and conglomerates such as Miramax, as well as the American Film Institute.

Sutton created his own marketing company, brandSUTTON. His company has been responsible for managing numerous celebrity clients and has overseen post-award show parties for celebrities like Sean "Puffy" Combs.

He also shared a producing credit with Quincy Jones on the 2001 documentary "The Freshest Kids."

Work in AIDS Education and Charities

General Hospital" had a far-reaching effect for this actor. He was part of two AIDS educational films: "Sex Unplugged " in 1995, and "Positive: A Journey into AIDS," an ABC Afterschool Special.

 

Sutton is actively involved in AIDS- related charities and awareness. He and his family donated the Atrium at Englewood Hospital and Medical Center in New Jersey in 2010.