Jump to content

AMC Death of Mary Fickett


Recommended Posts

  • Members

http://www.frederick...09102011/650918

Actress Mary Fickett dies at Callao home

Mary Fickett, longtime star of the soap opera "All My Children," dies at her home in Northumberland County.

Date published: 9/10/2011

BY FRANK DELANO

Mary Fickett, a New York actress whose career spanned 50 years of radio, television, stage and movies, died Thursday at her home in Callao in Northumberland County. She was 83.

For nearly 30 years, Fickett was loved and admired by millions of people as the good, compassionate nurse Ruth Parker Brent Martin on the daytime TV drama "All My Children." She appeared in the first episode of the show in 1970 and made her last appearance in 2000.

At the height of the Vietnam War in the show's 1972-73 season, Fickett delivered a touching monologue expressing her character's doubts about the war and fears about her drafted son.

Ruth's speech resonated with millions of viewers across America with the same doubts and fears. It also won Fickett an Emmy in 1973, the first ever awarded to a performer in a daytime drama.

With Ruth and her doctor husband as the drama's tent-pole characters, "All My Children" became the top-rated daytime TV drama in 1978. Ray MacDonnell played the role of Dr. Joe Martin, Fickett's TV husband.

Fickett "never really acted," MacDonnell said in 2008. "She was just a wonderful human being and a delight to work with. She was very bright and always cheerful and inspired natural emotions in me and her fellow actors."

ABC plans to dedicate the Sept. 21 episode of "All My Children" to Fickett. The show's network run ends Sept. 23.

Fickett's show-business career began in New York at the side of her father, Homer Fickett, a leading producer of radio and television shows in the 1940s and early 1950s. Reared in the fashionable Westchester County suburb of Bronxville, she attended Wheaton College and then enrolled in the Neighborhood Playhouse, a famous acting school run by Sanford Meisner.

Her Broadway debut occurred in 1949 in "I Know My Love," a comedy starring Alfred Lunt and Lynn Fontanne.

In 1955 she received a Theatre World Award for her performance in "Tea and Sympathy" with Anthony Perkins and Joan Fontaine. In 1958 she was nominated for a Tony for her role as Eleanor Roosevelt opposite Ralph Bellamy's FDR in "Sunrise at Campobello."

In her many other stage, screen and TV roles, she worked with other famous performers such as John Forsythe, Beatrice Arthur, Michael Dreyfuss, Brian Keith, Robert Culp, Jack Klugman, Bing Crosby, Dan Duryea, Ossie Davis and Hal Holbrook.

From 1961 until 1963 she joined Harry Reasoner as co-host of a new CBS morning show called "Calendar." The New York Times called it "a delightful oasis of fun and intelligence."

"I cut many a swath," Fickett said in 2008 from her bed at her daughter's home in Colonial Beach.

"I'm a little bit on hold. I'm not quite with it," she said. "It's amazing how much of your persona gets eaten up by time."

Fickett's marriages to James R.W. Congdon and Jay Leonard Scheer ended in divorce. In 1979 she married soap-opera director Allen Fristoe, who died in 2008.

Fickett is survived by her daughter Bronwyn "Anne" Congdon of Callao, her son Kenyon Stewart Congdon of Apopka, Fla., eight grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

A private service is planned

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Replies 43
  • Created
  • Last Reply
  • Members

God bless Mary and all her family. I will celebrate her life and the wonderful, warm, and nurturing performances she gave to this world. It's ironic that just yesterday I was thinking about her as Ruth, and how she was so much like my own grandmother. She represented the true American woman that has shaped and maintained the heart and soul of our nation..quiet, stoic, strong, and unwavering in love and devotion without judgement. She was to me the only Ruth, and without her, there was always a missing page in the AMC scrapbook. Godspeed to Mary...you touched myself and millions of others and will not soon be forgotten.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

How sad. We all loved Mary Fickett. There's an old adage, 'Death comes in threes.' Just before GL left the airwaves, Tom O'Rourke (Dr. Justin Marler) died. As we all know, ATWT's beloved matriarch Helen Wagner (Nancy) died, just weeks before the show's final taping, and, now, within two weeks of its final ABC telecast, AMC has lost its original Ruth, Mary Fickett. My heartfelt condolences to the family.

I would be remiss if I did not include OLTL's longtime director David Pressman, who recently died at the age of 97.

That makes four recently cancelled shows who have suffered the loss of one of their professional family.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

Everything I've seen of her, she truly did present the strong yet also loving mother and grandmother many have known. She was one of the most prominent features of AMC during its first decade and was a part of some very daring stories, from losing Phil to Vietnam, to her forbidden love for the roguish David Thornton, to her brutal rape by Ray Gardner. Ruth was an everywoman, yet also someone you could respect, and not take for granted.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

Even though the 'real' Ruth hasn't been on AMC in ages,

this news still makes me really sad.

I can't believe how many great ones we've lost in PV.

Grandma Kate, Charles, Mona, Nick, Langley, Phoebe, Myra, Myrtle, Palmer,....now Ruth.

So very sad.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

I am glad she is at peace. I can only imagine how much she declined since that photo was released a couple of years ago. I wish there was time for AMC to do a proper tribute, but such is life. Ruth was strong but sweet, and she had a way about her that was maybe to perfect, too Waspish, that you could imagine with just a slight twist in the writing how Ruth could be like the MTM character in Ordinary People. MF was a perfect fit in the Ruth role and her absence I think is one of the things that helped make AMC unidentifiable years ago. Pine Valley isn't the small town anymore, and Pine Valley never was truly Pine Valley without Ruth.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy