Actress injured in car accident

From the The Seattle Times, December 24, 1999 • Donated by Eddie.

by Sherry Grindeland, Seattle Times Eastside bureau

The loss of freedom hurts Peg Phillips more than her broken hip and wrist. Phillips, who played the beloved storekeeper Ruth Anne in television's "Northern Exposure" series, was hit by a car Wednesday in Woodinville. The accident occurred in a strip-mall parking lot.

The founder of the Woodinville Repertory Theatre company had just finished lunch at a coffee shop and was walking to her car when a driver backed into her. She fell, breaking her right hip and right wrist. The fractures required surgery. Yesterday from her bed at the Eastside Group Health Hospital, Phillips said she was more worried about getting around town than maneuvering through her home with a walker or cane.

"I won't be able to drive for 2 1/2 months," said the 81-year-old character actress. The one thing she isn't worried about, she said, is the Woodinville Repertory's upcoming production of "The Best Christmas Pageant Ever." In show-business tradition, the play will go on.

During the theater's first season Phillips ran the group's ticket office from her kitchen. This year a box- office manager joined the group and relieved her of the responsibility. "We have a wonderful producer, director and other people," she said. "I know it will be a great show." The people involved in the production, which runs Thursday and Jan. 1, 7, 8 and 9 at Woodinville's Leota Junior High School, were already missing her, producer Hal Ryder said.

Phillips had been planning the cast New Year's Eve party and had attended many of the rehearsals. But don't count Phillips down for long, Ryder said. She is being considered for both an upcoming TV show and a role in a movie. Just last month Phillips was in Los Angeles taping an "ER" episode. She was a patient on the show. "I like playing a patient in a hospital much better than being one," she said.

Copyright 2002 The Seattle Times Company

Northern Exposure is Copyright Universal City Studios. All Rights Reserved.

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