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The Real Maria von Trapp, Inspiration for “Sound of Music” Dies at 99

Sound of Music Inspiration Maria von Trapp, 99, died Tuesday at her home in Vermont.  She was the last surviving member of the family that was portrayed in the muscial “Sound of Music.”

The Real Maria von Trapp, Inspiration for “Sound of Music” Dies at 99

The Real Maria von Trapp, Inspiration for "Sound of Music" Dies at 99

The von Trapp family.

Maria von Trapp was the third oldest child of Georg von Trapp and Agathe Whitehead, who had seven children.

Her mother died of scarlet fever in 1922 and Maria also became ill with the disease.  This caused her to need an at home tutor.  That tutor was  Maria Kutschera who went on to marry her father after he saw how she cared for the children.

The family faced financial woes and had to move into the top portion of their house and rent out the lower level.  This is how they met an Archbishop that taught them to sing.  The began to sing across Austria.

When Nazi Germany took over Austria, the von Trapp family fled to Italy and then the United States.  Once in the United States, they toured the states and Canada singing.

The von Trapp family settled in Vermont and started their lives there.  When not touring and singing, they ran a music camp.  After the family disbanded in 1965, Maria became a missionary in Papua, New Guinea.

Maria was never married and is survived by members of her family that still manage the lodge in Vermont that is owned by the family.

The Real Maria von Trapp, Inspiration for “Sound of Music” Dies at 99

Photo courtesy of the von Trapp family website.

 

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