The Oscar- and Tony-winning actress grew up in Knoxville, attending Knoxville High School, and performed with the Tennessee Valley Players before winning a Tony on Broadway and Best Supporting Actress Oscar for Hud (1963). Among her movie credits, she played wealthy matron Emily Eustace Failenson in Breakfast at Tiffany's.
Married to Roald Dahl, author of children's classics, such as Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and James and the Giant Peach, Neal was paralyzed by strokes at age 39, leaving her comatose and unable to speak. Neal recovered to receive a second Oscar nomination for The Subject Was Roses (1968).
In 1978, Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center in Knoxville dedicated the Patricia Neal Rehabilitation Center in honor of her tireless work for brain-injured patients The center is nationally recognized for providing intense treatment for stroke, spinal cord, and brain injury patients. It serves as part of Neal's advocacy for paralysis victims.
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