With sad hearts, the world is remembering the life of American actress, Charmian Carr, who passed away on September 17, 2016. Fans of the actress, who played Leisl in The Sound of Music (1965), are wondering: how did Charmian Carr die? Her cause of death was attributed to complications from a rare form of dementia, according to her representative.
Charmian Carr’s movies made a huge impact on all of her fans, ever since her best-known and debut role as the eldest Von Trapp daughter in The Sound of Music. Some of her other acting roles included the TV movie, Evening Primrose (1966), and in the TV series, Mad Men in the episode “Tea Leaves” in 2012. Charmian Carr’s age when she died was 73, and through her years of life she was greatly loved by family, friends, coworkers and fans. Fellow actress Kym Karath, who played the youngest Von Trapp daughter, Gretyl, had this to say about Carr on Twitter: “It is with infinite sadness that I share the tragic news that the precious & exquisite Charmian Carr, beautiful Leisl, has passed away.”
Carr’s rise to fame is thanks to her mother, who arranged for her to audition for a role in The Sound of Music, even though she did not have any professional singing or acting experience. Carr was actually studying speech therapy and philosophy at the San Fernando Valley State College during that time. Carr’s real last name is Farnon but Sound of Music director, Robert Wise, felt it was too long to pair with her first name—he dubbed her Charmian Carr, the name we all know today.
Carr married Jay Brent, a dentist, and left the life of show business to set up an interior design business in southern California. She worked for clients including Michael Jackson and Sound of Music screenwriter, Ernest Lehman. Carr and her husband have two daughters, Emily and Jennifer, and two grandchildren, Emma and Derek. She wrote two books about her experiences, Forever Leisl and Letters to Leisl.
With a full life and a memorable role to leave generations with, Charmian Carr bids us “So Long Farewell.”