Rosmarie Trapp of the Musical Family Who Inspired The Sound of Music Dead at 93

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Rosmarie Trapp, the daughter of Georg von Trapp and Maria Augusta Kutschera — whose family inspired the classic Rodgers and Hammerstein musical The Sound of Music — has died. She was 93.

In an Instagram statement shared Saturday, the Trapp family said Rosmarie "passed away peacefully on Friday evening," adding that "she was in the presence of loved ones all day long."

"Her kindness, generosity, and colorful spirit were legendary, and she had a positive impact on countless lives," her family shared, describing her as one of the "kindest, most gentle souls."

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"Please respect our family's privacy as we take time to process this loss, and prepare to celebrate the life of an amazing woman," they concluded. "We believe the best way to recognize Rosmarie is to demonstrate the same selfless kindness and generosity that she exemplified daily."

The statement was signed by Johannes, Lynne, Kristina, and Sam von Trapp.

Born near Salzburg, Austria, on Feb. 8, 1929, Rosmarie was the eldest child of Captain Georg and his second wife Maria Augusta, according to her obituary. She was raised with her seven older half-siblings as well as her two younger siblings.

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‘Sound of Music’ family’s Rosmarie Trapp dead at 93
‘Sound of Music’ family’s Rosmarie Trapp dead at 93

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The von Trapp family fled their home in Austria to escape from the Nazis in 1938 as tensions rose before World War II, and they eventually ended up in the U.S. Their story inspired The Sound of Music, the 1959 Broadway musical that was later adapted into a 1965 movie starring Julie Andrews as Maria. The film won five 1966 Academy Awards, including best picture and best director.

Once in the U.S., the von Trapps settled in Lower Merion, Pennsylvania, for three years before heading to Stowe, Vermont, in the summer of 1942. In 1951, Rosmarie officially became a U.S. citizen, signing her name as Rosmarie Trapp.

She was a member of the Trapp Family Singers, traveling and performing at several shows, and worked at the family's Trapp Family Lodge in Stowe. She was a lay missionary for five years in Papua, New Guinea, with her older sister Maria. She also volunteered in Israel, staying past her allotted Visa date. Her hobbies included knitting, teaching others how to sing, and enjoying her cats who "brought her great joy," and indulging in "the occasional beer," her obituary says.

She "was famous for walking everywhere" in Stowe and "locals marveled at her pulling her purchases home in a wagon or on a cart, often for a significant distance." Her letters to the Stowe Reporter also garnered enough attention to land her own column called Rosmarie's Corner, per the notice.

"An emotionally sensitive person, Rosmarie had a keen insight and intuition as to who might benefit from her supportive ear, and she helped many people through difficult times. Her generosity led her to constantly help others, literally offering people the clothes off her back, and running low on funds herself at times, after giving money to those she felt needed it more than she did. It is impossible to keep track of all those she helped over the years, and people continue to come forward with their personal stories," the obituary shares.

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She is survived by her brother Johannes von Trapp, who is notably the last living member of the von Trapp Family Singers, and his wife Lynne as well as several nieces, nephews and family in Vermont and Europe.

Her funeral is scheduled for Sunday at 2 p.m. local time at the Stowe Community Church. She has already been buried at the Trapp Family Lodge's cemetery, according to the obituary.

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