Maria von Trapp, the last surviving member of the seven original Trapp Family Singers — the Austrian family that inspired the 1965 film The Sound of Music — has died at 99 at her home in Vermont.
Von Trapp, whose family escaped Nazi Germany, died on Tuesday of natural causes, her brother Johannes von Trapp said, according to the New York Daily News.
“She was a lovely woman who was one of the few truly good people,” he said, according to The Associated Press. “There wasn’t a mean or miserable bone in her body. I think everyone who knew her would agree with that.”
The Associated Press writes:
“Maria von Trapp was the third child and second-oldest daughter of Austrian Naval Capt. Georg von Trapp and his first wife, Agathe Whitehead von Trapp. Their seven children were the basis for the singing family in the musical and film.
“The Sound of Music was based loosely on a 1949 book by von Trapp’s second wife, also Maria von Trapp, who died in 1987. It tells the story of an Austrian woman who married a widower with seven children and teaches them music.
“In 1938, the family escaped from Nazi-occupied Austria and performed concert tours throughout Europe and then a three-month tour in America. The family settled in Vermont in the early 1940s and opened a ski lodge in Stowe.
“Von Trapp played accordion and taught Austrian dance with sister Rosmarie at the lodge.”