Foynes museum to host Maureen O'Hara fashion show

Foynes Flying Boat museum to celebrate Maureen O'Hara, one hundred years since her birth
Foynes museum to host Maureen O'Hara fashion show
A still from the 20th Century Fox Motion Picture 'To the Shores of Tripoli' starring Maureen O'Hara, John Payne and Randolf Scott.

A special celebration to mark the centenary of the birth of the late Hollywood actress Maureen O'Hara is to be held at the Foynes Flying Boat museum in County Limerick.

The museum will host a fashion show next month consisting of dresses worn over the course of the Irish born actor's distinguished career.

O'Hara, who died at the age of 95 in 2015, appeared in such well known films as The Quiet Man, Miracle on 34th Street, How Green Was My Valley and The Hunchback of Notre Dame.

Her last major film was in 1991 when she starred alongside the late John Candy in Only The Lonely.

Ms O'Hara was a patron of the Foynes museum. She took on the role in memory of her husband, Charles Blair, who was a flying boat captain and decorated United States Air Force officer.

The couple first met when the actor was travelling to Ireland in 1947 on a flying boat captained by the brigadier general. He was killed in an air crash in the Caribbean in 1978.

When Maureen O'Hara died she was buried at Arlington National Cemetery outside Washington in the same grave as her husband.

In 2017 her family donated a vast collection of the star's memorabilia to the Foynes museum.

The collection holds more than 300 garments as well as her honorary Oscar and personal items, awards, movie contracts, furniture, personal letters and diaries.

The fashion show, coordinated by the Holman-Lee model agency, will adhere to all social distancing requirements, with just 50 tickets being made available.

The actress was born in Ranelagh, Dublin in 1920. She was married four times and made up to 60 films.

O'Hara was born Maureen Fitzsimons. She changed her name to O'Hara on the advice of actor Charles Laughton who first discovered her as a feisty 19-year-old with captivating good looks.

The Abbey Theatre-trained actor became a naturalised US citizen in 1946 and held dual Irish-US citizenship.

 The woman known as 'Big Red' for her fiery hair, starred opposite many of Hollywood’s greats, including John Wayne, Jimmy Stewart, Henry Fonda, and Alec Guinness.

Maureen O'Hara as Esmerelda
Maureen O'Hara as Esmerelda

She bought Lugdine Park in Glengarriff with her late husband Charles Blair in 1970. Her daughter Bronwyn (71) died in 2016.

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