'To Kill A Mocking Bird' actress dies

Collin Wilcox

The actress, who shot to fame with her role of a white girl who wrongly accuses a black man of rape in the Gregory Peck starrer classic died on October 14 of brain cancer at her home in Highlands, N C.

Paxton, an accomplished stage actress, worked opposite Richard Basehart on Broadway in 'The Day the Money Stopped' in 1958, the Hollywood Reporter said.
She also starred with Tallulah Bankhead in 'Crazy October', Geraldine Page in 'Strange Interlude' and Ruth Gordon in 'La Bonne Soup'.

'Mockingbird' was her film debut, where she portrayed Mayella Violet Ewell, the daughter of a racist (James Anderson) who accuses a black man of rape under pressure from her father.

The scene in which she is cross-examined by Gregory Peck's character, lawyer Atticus Finch, is considered one of the best court scenes in movie history.
She later worked in TV shows like 'The Twilight Zone', 'Playhouse 90', 'The Waltons' and 'Columbo'. Paxton left Hollywood in the early '80s to return to her homeland in Highlands.

The actress is survived by her husband and two children.

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