Maureen O'Hara, the flame-haired Irish-American star of such classics as "Miracle on 34th Street," "How Green Was My Valley" and "The Quiet Man," has died. She was 95.
Maureen O'Hara, one of the most striking faces from the golden age of Hollywood cinema, died of natural causes on Saturday, her manager said.
O'Hara was best known for her frequent collaborations with director John Ford, having starred in several of his most famous films, including "How Green Was My Valley" and "The Quiet Man," the latter opposite John Wayne.
The 1941 film "How Green Was My Valley," in which she played the beautiful daughter in the tale of a coal mining family, won five Oscars including best picture.
Among the many other famous titles she appeared in were the 1939 version of "The Hunchback of Notre Dame" and the 1947 holiday classic "Miracle on 34th Street."
Born Maureen FitzSimons in 1920 near Dublin, Ireland, she started acting when she was young. After partnering with famed director Charles Laughton, who gave her the stage name O'Hara, she moved to Hollywood in 1939 to star in "The Hunchback of Notre Dame."
She went on to star in dozens of famous films, including "Sitting Pretty" (1948), "Father Was a Fullback" (1949) and "Rio Grande" (1950). She also starred with Wayne in "The Wings of Eagles"(1957), "McClintock!" (1963) and "Big Jake" (1971).
'Feisty and fearless'
O'Hara was known as the Queen of Technicolor due to her flame-colored hair, emerald eyes and brassy nature.
"Her characters were feisty and fearless, just as she was in real life," her family said in a statement.
She married her third husband Brig. Gen. Charles Blair in 1968, and after "Big Jake" left movie making to follow Blair to the Virgin Islands, where he ran an airline. She travelled all over the world with her husband until he died in a plane crash in 1978, after which she managed the airline until she sold it.
O'Hara then returned to make a number of movies during the 1990s, but as she admitted it became increasingly difficult to find roles as an older woman.
Her family said she died surrounded by loved ones as they remembered her life by listening to the music from her favorite film, "The Quiet Man."
blc, cw/cmk (AP, Reuters)