Wednesday, May 22, 2013
The Associated Press
ORLANDO, Fla. — Phyllis Thaxter, a film and television actress who was the daughter of a Maine Supreme Judicial Court justice, has died in Florida. She was 92.
This 1955 publicity shot shows actress and Maine native Phyllis Thaxter. Thaxter has died at age 92.
Thaxter’s daughter, Skye Aubrey, said the Maine native died Tuesday in Longwood, just north of Orlando, after a nine-year fight with Alzheimer’s disease.
She appeared in 17 movies and had had dozens of television roles, including a run on “Alfred Hitchcock Presents” from 1956 to 1960 and a stint on the “Alfred Hitchcock Hour” in 1963 and 1964.
Thaxter was born in Portland on Nov. 20, 1921, the daughter of Maine Supreme Court Justice Sidney Thaxter, according to a profile on the Internet Movie Data Base.
Her best known role was as the farm wife Martha Kent in the 1978 Superman film starring Christopher Reeve as her adopted superhero son and Glenn Ford as her husband.
Following her divorce in 1962 from James T. Aubrey, she married Gilbert Lea, the owner of Tower Publishing Co. in Portland.
The couple eventually moved to Cumberland, Maine, where they lived for about 20 years. During that time, Thaxter became involved in civic and community activities.
Lea died in 2008.