After Saying Goodbye To Ellen Pompeo, Grey’s Anatomy Is Losing Another Longtime Series Regular

The 19th season of Grey’s Anatomy has seen a sort of changing of the guards, as star Ellen Pompeo made her exit from the beloved ABC series, with five new characters being introduced to take up the mantle. Now, the series is losing another longtime series regular, as Kelly McCreary announced her exit from the show. McCreary has portrayed Maggie Pierce — Meredith Grey’s half-sister — since Season 10.

Kelly McCreary’s final episode as a series regular will air Thursday, April 13, Deadline reports, though like Ellen Pompeo, she plans to check back into the happenings at Grey Sloan Memorial later this season. The actress released a statement announcing her impending departure, which reads: 

After nine seasons, I am saying goodbye to Maggie Pierce and her Grey Sloan family. It has been a tremendous honor to be a part of such a legendary television institution as Grey’s Anatomy. I will always be grateful to Shonda Rhimes, Krista Vernoff, and ABC for the opportunity, and to the incredible fans for their passionate support.

Grey’s Anatomy Season 19 has seen trouble in Maggie’s relationship with Winston Ndugu (Anthony Hill), who she married in a romantic Season 17 ceremony. The latest episode, “Sisters Are Doin’ It for Themselves,” solidified the sisterly bond between Maggie and Amelia (Caterina Scorsone), even in Meredith’s absence, as Maggie has been staying with Meredith's sister-in-law during her and Winston's separation. 

Kelly McCreary's announcement may suggest that the couple are not able to overcome their issues, but we'll have to watch her remaining episodes to see. The actress' statement continued:

To spend nine years exploring a character inside and out, while reaching a global audience with impactful stories, is a rare gift. It has afforded me an opportunity to collaborate with, learn from, and be inspired by countless brilliant artists both in front of and behind the camera. Playing Maggie Pierce has been one of the true joys of my life and I leave with profound gratitude for every step of this journey. I am excited for this next chapter, and what the future holds.

In addition to these two big character exits, Grey’s Anatomy is also losing showrunner Krista Vernoff at the end of Season 19. There was a lot of speculation ahead of Ellen Pompeo’s exit about whether or not the series could survive without its namesake surgeon, and while the introduction of the new first-year residents has some longtime fans excited, the phrase “out with the old, in with the new” seems to be in play a little bit. 

However, turnover is nothing new on the show, with several series regulars leaving Grey’s over the past few seasons. Jesse Williams (who played Jackson Avery), Greg Germann (Tom Koracick) and Giacomo Gianniotti (Andrew DeLuca) all left in Season 17, with Richard Flood (Cormac Hayes) exiting in Season 18. We’ll have to see if there are any more losses following the Season 19 departures we've seen so far. 

New episodes of Grey’s Anatomy air at 9 p.m. ET Thursdays on ABC. Check out our 2023 TV schedule to see what premieres are coming soon.

Heidi Venable
Content Producer

Heidi Venable is a Content Producer for CinemaBlend, a mom of two and a hard-core '90s kid. She started freelancing for CinemaBlend in 2020 and officially came on board in 2021. Her job entails writing news stories and TV reactions from some of her favorite prime-time shows like Grey's Anatomy and The Bachelor. She graduated from Louisiana Tech University with a degree in Journalism and worked in the newspaper industry for almost two decades in multiple roles including Sports Editor, Page Designer and Online Editor. Unprovoked, will quote Friends in any situation. Thrives on New Orleans Saints football, The West Wing and taco trucks.