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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Virginia Patton Moss, the last surviving adult cast member of ‘It’s a Wonderful Life,’ dies at 97

Patton Moss in 1956.  (Movie Star News/Zuma Press/TNS)
By Peter Sblendorio New York Daily News

Virginia Patton Moss, who appeared in more than a dozen films during the 1940s including the Christmas classic “It’s a Wonderful Life,” has died at age 97.

A cause of death was not released for Patton Moss, who played Ruth Dakin, the wife of Todd Karns’ Harry Bailey, in “It’s a Wonderful Life.”

Patton Moss was the 1946 movie’s last living adult cast member, according to Variety.

“We have another angel!” Karolyn Grimes, who played Zuzu as a child actress in “It’s a “Wonderful Life,” wrote in a Facebook post Sunday.

Patton Moss retired from the movie business in 1949 – the same year she married longtime husband Cruse W. Moss. They remained married until his death in 2018.

“She is now with her beloved Cruse,” Grimes wrote of Patton Moss. “She will be missed!”

Patton Moss got her start in acting with multiple uncredited roles in 1943, and landed her first leading gig in the 1948 Western “Black Eagle.” Her final film was the 1949 comedy “The Lucky Stiff.”

The mother-of-three lived much of her life in Ann Arbor, Mich., with her husband. In 2012, she expressed no regrets about her early retirement from the entertainment industry, according to Variety.

“I wanted exactly what I am,” Patton Moss said at the time. “Ann Arbor, Michigan, a wonderful husband, wonderful children, a good part of the community. I work hard for the community.”

Directed by Frank Capra, “It’s a Wonderful Life” received five Oscar nominations, including best picture, and was preserved by the U.S. National Film Registry in 1990. The American Film Institute recognizes “It’s a Wonderful Life” as No. 1 on its list of the most inspirational movies ever made.