Born December 5, 1921, Hansen was raised in Detroit, Michigan. He served with the U.S. Marine Corps and flew combat in the South Pacific. After, he followed his dreams of becoming an actor and was signed by Paramount Studios, and featured in Branded (1950), with Alan Ladd, When Worlds Collide (1951) and The Savage (1952).
Hansen appeared on General Hospital from 1965 to 1976, 1977 to 1986, was on it in 1990 and from 1992 to 2004. His work on the show earned him a Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actor in 1979. Hansen’s character was an addiction counselor at the hospital and then went on to serve as mayor of Port Charles.
He also acted on stage on Broadway, in Los Angeles and San Francisco. With over 100 acting credits to his name, his many television appearances included The Goldbergs, Cheers, Sea Hunt, Jim Bowie, Science Fiction Theatre, Perry Mason, The Lone Ranger, and Matinee Theatre.
He was married to Florence (Betty) Elizabeth Moe for 50 years until her death in 1993. Hansen then shared 24 years as companion to Barbara Wenzel. He is survived by son Peter, daughter Gretchen and grandchildren Allison, Erik and Jamal.