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22nd Aug 2022

It’s A Wonderful Life actress Virginia Patton dies aged 97

Ellen Fitzpatrick

Rest in peace.

It’s A Wonderful Life actress Virginia Patton has sadly died at the age of 97.

The star was the last surviving adult actor from the classic comedy. She was confirmed to have passed on August 18 in Albany, Georgia in an assisted living facility.

Matthews Funeral Home has announced her passing as it was listed on their obituaries.

Patton starred in the fan favourite film as Jimmy Stewart’s sister-in-law, Ruth Dakin Bailey, which was released in 1946.

Sharing her condolences over her death, It’s A Wonderful Life co-star Karolyn Grimes, who appeared in the film as a child, wrote a stunning tribute on Facebook when the news broke.

She wrote: “We have another angel! Virginia Patton Moss. She was 97 years old. She is now with her beloved Cruse. She will be missed!”

Originally from Cleveland, Ohio, she was born on June 25th 1925 but was raised in Portland, Oregon. After graduating high school in 1942, she moved to Los Angeles to pursue a career in acting.

After securing a role in It’s A Wonderful Life, she went on to star in 1947’s The Burning Cross and Black Eagle in 1948.

With her last role noted as The Lucky Stiff, Patton left the film industry to raise her family of three children and begin a career in business.

Speaking about her move from Hollywood to business, she said in 2012 that she was asked to rethink her decision but was comfortable with the choice she had made.

“I have a beautiful letter that [Capra] wrote me because I kept in touch with him,” she said.

“He wrote “I just knew you’d be a wonderful mother with three little bambinos and a wonderful husband.””

Patton married automotive executive Cruse W. Moss in 1949 and the two lived in Michigan with their three children.