Heather Menzies-Urich, best known for playing Louisa Von Trapp in the 1965 film The Sound of Music, died on December 24 at the age of 68 in Frankford, Ontario. Her death was announced on Monday, December 25, by the estate of the musical's creators, Rodgers & Hammerstein. According to reports, she was diagnosed with brain cancer in November of this year.
Menzies-Urich was 15 when The Sound of Music was released, her first major role as a performer. The film went on to receive five Academy Awards, including Best Picture.
Ted Chapin, president of the Rodgers & Hammerstein Organization, made the following statement: "Heather was part of 'the family.' There is really no other way to describe the members of the cast of the movie of The Sound Of Music. And of ‘the kids,' Heather was a cheerful and positive member of the group, always hoping for the next gathering. We are all lucky to have known her, and she will happily live on in that beautiful movie. We will miss her."
Following The Sound of Music, Menzies-Urich had several television roles, appearing on Dragnet, Bonanza, Marcus Welby, M.D., The Bob Newhart Show, and the short-lived series Logan's Run, in which she starred as Jessica.
She was married to actor John Cluett from 1969-73 and then married actor and producer Robert Urich in 1975, with whom she had three children. Urich died in 2002.
"She was an actress, a ballerina and loved living her life to the fullest," said her son, Ryan Urich, in a statement. "She was not in any pain but, nearly four weeks after her diagnosis of terminal brain cancer, she had enough and took her last breath on this earth at 7:22pm."
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