Norma was born in Massachusetts April 11, 1926 to James and Clara Leary. She was eleven years younger than her sister, Dorothy, who was married with four children in California. Norma lived in the Boston area all of her life; including Cambridge, Belmont, and Watertown.
Norma graduated from Emerson College with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in theater. There she met Norman Lear and they remained friends for many years.
Norma’s first love was acting, and while she never hit the big time, she had acting roles in theater and summer stock for many years in and around Boston. She also had a few small parts in The Phil Silvers Show (1950s) and a small part in the movie “Monument Ave.” (1998) starring Denis Leary (not related). She continued her acting career with voiceovers and local commercials.
Norma remained a member of the Actors Guild, and through the years she connected with her California family through her letters and humorous cards. When visiting her at her home, she offered warmth and hospitality. Norma will be remembered for the fun trips she took with her family in California and Boston, her independence, and her generosity.
Norma is preceded in death by her parents, James and Clara Leary, sister Dorothy Miller (Leary) and husband Lee, nieces Meredith Miller and Vicki Dexter (Miller) and husband Don. She is survived by her nephew, Bruce Miller and wife Nancy, Niece, Norma Haywood (Miller) and husband Darrell, two great nieces, three great-great nephews, and two great-great nieces.
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