American character actress, known for her brash characters, who made her mark not only in musical comedies but also in straight plays and fluffy comedies.
Appeared as a minor juvenile player in Shirley Temple and Jane Withers film vehicles during the late '30s.
At age 14, Mary performed as a torch singer at a night spot known as 'Hollywood Tropics'.
Copped a 1977 Tony award nomination for her performance in "Anna Christie."
Created the role of raucous Mama Morton in the Broadway stage version of "Chicago." Her musical role was later played by Queen Latifah in the 2002 film version.
Had just finished her first TV season as starchy Nurse Willoughby in "Trapper John, M.D." when she passed away.
Her close companion was actress Margaret Lindsay.
Interred at Calvary Cemetery, Los Angeles County, California.
Was nominated for Broadway's 1977 Tony Award as Best Actress (Featured Role - Play) for a revival of Eugene O'Neill's "Anna Christie."