Actress Maureen O'Hara Has Passed Away & Hollywood Has Lost A Legend
Sad news this Saturday: According to reports, The Quiet Man's red-haired star, Maureen O'Hara, died at age 95 on Saturday, October 14. According to Irish Times, O'Hara's family has confirmed that the actress died peacefully in her sleep in Boise, Idaho. She was surrounded by family and her longtime manager, Johnny Nicoletti, Fox News reports, as they listened to The Quiet Man's soundtrack.
The statement from O'Hara's family reads:
It is with a sad heart that we share the news that Maureen O’Hara passed away today in her sleep of natural causes [...] As much as Maureen cherished her privacy, she always appreciated the expressions of good will from people around the world and from all walks of life. She especially loved it when children recognised her from her role in Miracle on 34th Street and asked her: ‘Are you the lady who knows Santa Claus?’ She always answered: ‘Yes I am. What would you like me to tell him?’ [...] For those who may ask what they can do to honour Maureen, we have a simple request: visit Ireland one day and think of her.
O'Hara, best known for her work in The Quiet Man opposite John Wayne, was born on August 17, 1920 in Ranelagh, Dublin. She was the oldest of six children and held a dual Irish-U.S. citizenship. She spent the better part of her late life residing in West Cork, Ireland, enjoying what her family statement referred to as her "cherished privacy."
O'Hara was a mother, grandmother, and a remarkable actress. Her early work consisted of films such as The Quiet Man, My Irish Molly, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, and the Christmas classic Miracle on 34th Street. She was awarded an honorary Oscar last year, but she also became interested in the field of aviation later in life, and would go on to become the "first president of a commercially scheduled airline" in the U.S., Irish Times also reports.
The actress had a long career in the industry, and was a tour de force onscreen. Her pale skin and vibrant red hair made her many a filmmaker's muse, and her Irish spunk made her a sought-after leading lady. According to Fox News, O'Hara was asked if her real-life persona mimicked that of her often headstrong onscreen persona. "I do like to get my own way," she said. "But don't think I'm not acting when I'm up there. And don't think I always get my own way. There have been crushing disappointments. But when that happens, I say, 'Find another hill to climb.'"
O'Hara will be greatly missed on- and off-screen as she was truly an inspirational actress and woman.