Saddest ‘NCIS’ Casualties...So Far

In between all the jokes and humor, especially from Special Agent Anthony aka Tony DiNozzo (played by Michael Weatherly), the hit drama “NCIS” has experienced, and probably will continue to experience, some very sad casualties. Yes, the show is about catching murderers and stopping crime, but it’s hard to watch some characters leave the show, even if it is in the line of duty. Here are the saddest “NCIS” far.

10. Special Agent Brent Langer
NCIS Agent Brent Langer

Jonathan Lapaglia may have only played Brent Langer in two episodes, but his death didn’t pass lightly, especially for Special Agent Leroy Jethro Gibbs (Mark Harmon). After joining the NCIS team - he previously worked for the FBI - Langer was set up to look like a mole in the agency by Agent Lee (explored below). To make matters worse, Lee killed him. Gibbs questioned Langer’s death from the beginning, and finally punished Lee for her treason.

9. Special Agent Lara Macy
NCIS Agent Lara Macy

At the end of Season 6, Louise Lombard first showed up as Lara Macy, the head of the Los Angeles Special Projects team. The two episodes acted as a crossover and introductory for “NCIS: LA.” In addition to leading a team, her strained relationship with Gibbs was briefly mentioned, and it was later revealed she covered up Gibbs’ killing of Pedro Hernandez aka the man who killed his wife and daughter. Macy ended up murdered by the Hernandez family for her cover-up. She tried to protect Gibbs, and it ended sadly for her.

8. Special Agent Michelle Lee
NCIS Agent Michelle Lee

Now, you may be asking “why is Liza Lapira’s Agent Lee on this list if her character committed treason?” and I say good question. Yes, she killed Langer and acted as an NCIS mole, but her death was sort of sad. For three seasons, “NCIS” fans came to not only know Lee as an agent within in the legal department, but for also having a clandestine relationship with Jimmy Palmer (Brian Dietzen). She turned into a traitor, because some psychopath (played by “Sex and the City” actor David Eigenberg) was holding her sister hostage - who Lee raised like a daughter - in exchange for information. Eventually, her sister was returned. Unfortunately for Lee, Gibbs shoots a bullet through her into Eigenberg, resulting in each of their deaths. The sad part is Lee gave Gibbs the OK to kill her, so her sister would be safe.

7. Mossad Director Eli David
Mossad Director Eli David

This is another character fans might not have been sad to see go, but I had to include him for Ziva’s (Cote de Pablo) sake. This season, Ziva’s father, Eli David (Michael Nouri), was shot and killed. Yes, he and Ziva didn’t have the best relationship, thanks to Eli. Gibbs is more of a father than Eli ever was to Ziva. However, fans hearts broke to see Ziva’s sadness over the death of Eli, especially when she cried out “Aba!” after finding his dead body.

6. Special Agent Paula Cassidy
NCIS Agent Paula Cassidy

Actress Jessica Steen was featured throughout “NCIS” as Paula Cassidy, until Season 4 when she sacrificed herself by throwing herself on top of a terrorist bomber who had previously killed Cassidy’s team members. On occasion she was well received, but Tiva fans might not have been happy for the flirting and complicated relationship Cassidy had with Tony. Even so, Cassidy went out a hero.

5. Jackie Vance
NCIS Jackie Vance

This was a death I did not expect. This season, Jackie Vance (Paula Newsome) was killed alongside Eli David at the Vance household. She was collateral damage, as the gunfire was meant for Eli. Fans are currently watching NCIS Director Leon Vance (Rocky Carroll) grieve, struggle, guide his children and figure out his life, after his wife’s tragic death.

4. Special Agent Kate Todd
NCIS Agent Kate Todd

Even though Sasha Alexander fans can currently watch the actress on TNT’s “Rizzoli & Isles” catch bad guys, she was first fighting crime as Caitlin “Kate” Todd on “NCIS.” Alexander left the series after Season 2, and it was devastating for viewers and her NCIS team. Todd literally left the show with a bang, as she was shot in the head by Gibbs’ enemy/Ziva’s half-brother Ari Haswari (Rudolf Martin). It was hard for fans to get used to Ziva when she showed up in Season 3, but thankfully, she did appear, because she’s the one who killed Ari.

3. Director Jenny Shepard
NCIS Director Jenny Shepard

Jenny (Lauren Holly) could have been Gibbs’ other half, but unfortunately she was killed off at the end of Season 5. Fans grew to love her as the sultry, strong redhead who had a soft spot for Leroy Jethro. The two had a long, complicated history, and there was some hope the two would end up together. Sadly, that didn’t happen. In addition to being killed during a shootout, Jenny was also dying from an unexplained illness. Either way, she would have left the NCIS family.

2. Shannon and Kelly Gibbs
NCIS Shannon and Kelly Gibbs
Gibbs hasn’t had an easy life. He’s been married four times and divorced three. It is revealed in Season 3, that his first wife, Shannon (Darby Stanchfield), and daughter, Kelly, were murdered by Mexican drug dealer Pedro Hernandez. Shannon witnessed Hernandez commit murder and was set to testify against him, but not before he killed her and Kelly. Gibbs got his revenge by taking a sniper rifle to Mexico and shooting Pedro dead. The tragedy lives with him everyday, and is often a topic on the show. For example, in Season 6, we learn Gibbs’ famous rules are thanks to Shannon. She will always be his one true love.

1. Mike Franks
Mike Franks on NCIS
Last, we have the beloved Mike Franks (Muse Watson). My heart still hurts over his death. Franks is known and loved for his hardass qualities. He’s a rough and tough kind of guy. Early on, we learn Franks was the one who recruited Gibbs to work at NCIS. Ever since then, the two have been best friends. Sadly, Mike died in Season 8, after the Port to Port Killer (Kerr Smith) stabbed and killed him. In the Season 8 finale, viewers learned that Mike was dying from a terminal illness, but I will never forgive this death. I only wish “NCIS” was a supernatural show so they could bring back Franks!

- Muse Watson
- Jonathan LaPaglia
- Louise Lombard
- Liza Lapira
- Michael Nouri
- Jessica Steen
- Paula Newsome
- Sasha Alexander
- Lauren Holly
- Darby Stanchfield

Written by: akoerner
Mar 21st, 2013, 10:04 am

Images courtesy of CBS


Message Posted On Feb 16th, 2014, 12:55 am
My friend left his input, so here is mine; I missed Jenny, she cudda retired and then Gibbs cudda visited her. Cassidy not on show enuf to make impact, so NCIS could have used her much more, same with Macy character. Jackie, sad and she should have stayed, no reason to 'off her to show viewers that casualties happen' because we see casualties plenty enough through the plots most weeks; if actor wanted off, replace her because storyline for Vance as a widower? RU kidding? Lame excuse.REALLY should have found a way to keep Mike Franks retired or use more in flash backs/pick one - but get Muse back. Kate had an irritating way about her, hard to believe she could guard a president, glad she left - however, was absolutely shocked at when/how and I thought show well done...but not 'sad' by any means. So, no one misses matt craven/secnav? Guess that says it all... Shannon/Kelly already died, don't count because part of who gibbs' character started as. Langer would have been a great long term addition, can't miss when no attachment.made he wudda been good. Michele was a jerk, bad actor, or bad writing because she was all over the place, so glad she was off'd, could have disappeared for all anyone cares/ should have had a great character actor in there instead. Eli shooting good, went soft, though and could have stretched it out better. agree Pacci was enough to miss, even if was flashback. Armands Asante was great as The Frog! Miss actor, good, long storyline! Someone bring back Jamie Lee! And do NOT kill her off! whew!

Message Posted On Feb 15th, 2014, 4:54 pm
No rrason to off Jackie, unless she wanted it as an actor. Kate HAD to go, too obvious she had hard time playing second to gibbs..always challenging, questioning - if i spoke to my boss like that half as much as her, i wud have been canned too! Jenny, Macy, Cassidy, Jackie - all strong women, all gone. Message? Hmmm....uh, YEAH. Ziva was great, she got away with stuff because the team took to her and she became family. She carried her weight, and was qualified phyically, spoke several langs, etc. gotta like her replacement, tho- even if she was selected via 'market-share' for the 'younger gens'. Also like the way her experience is fed-in by episode rather than all at once. will Tony be next-exit? Hope season ends with a party, not a bang!

Message Posted On Oct 28th, 2013, 11:15 am
Folks seem to be blaming writers for deaths. Sometimes it is the actor's choice , I.e. Ziva. I would like to know why actors were written out.

Message Posted On Oct 28th, 2013, 11:12 am
Interested to know why characters were written out--often it is actors' choice to move on. Writers should not be blamed for that.

Message Posted On May 2nd, 2013, 11:54 am
mike franks FOREVER!!!

Level 2 (17%)
Since: 29/Apr/12
Message Posted On Apr 25th, 2013, 10:45 pm

i want to correct someone , ziva did tell gibbs that her father had killed the guy ,but as she was telling him, gunfire broke out @ the vance household, ..

 wow a lot of not ziva  fans on this site , don't get it , i think she has proven herself to the one man she respects & that's gibbs..


Message Posted On Mar 26th, 2013, 11:48 am
I think that Kate's death was the biggest in the show. I didn't always like Mike, but he definitely affected the show. I just didn't understand the big crudest in the elevator....ridiculous scene that didn't ring true t all. Paula's death was extremely sad. She was an excellent counter to Tony, could stand up,to him. They could've segued from the romance to friendship while keeping wittiness and snappy interactions. Poor Lee....she was destroyed by SBs inability to create a coherent or believable storyline. I think back to what happened to Jenny and see the same thing. If it hadn't been for the inept SB, tthey would've,had Jenny and Gibbs work through the lingering emotions of their failed romance to create an interesting working environment. How could you forget Pacci? He made enou impact that he was brought back from the dead. :). Well, okay it was a flashback. As for some of the others you named, I think Danny Pryces murder had more affect on me. I am sorry to see the loss of Jackie Vance as she was a strong character who definitely brought out the soft side of Vance. I always loved the scene of him talking to her on his cell phone as he tries to enter an elevator occupied by Tony and Tim. He sooooo wanted to tell Jackie "I love you" without that audience. LOL.

Message Posted On Mar 26th, 2013, 5:39 am
If any David should have died it should have been z, but as always she causes a disaster and nothing happens to her. Was sorry to see Kate and Paula die, but I think Jackie is the worst as she was a victim of z not doing her job.

Message Posted On Mar 25th, 2013, 10:20 pm

Message Posted On Mar 25th, 2013, 9:16 pm
Macy didn't even make much of an impact and really doesn't belong on this list, IMO. Mike Franks' time was up, good riddance. Michelle Lee's character was totally twisted and shouldn't have died like that, but that's SB for you. I thought Paula, Kate and Jackie's deaths were the saddest and the most unexpected. Three strong women, killed off by the show. Why don't they kill off Ziva?
Related news

Which TV Shows Took the Cake In Tuesday Night Ratings?

It's Wednesday, December 7th, and with it another round of Tuesday night..

Raising Hope to Have a 'Wonderful Life," and Other TV to Have You Raging Tonight

It's Tuesday, December 13th!  Your round of weekly TV continues as the..

What TV Shows Cracked the Case in Tuesday Night Ratings?

It's Wednesday, December 14th, and with it another round of Tuesday night..
Discuss NCIS