Mary Ellen, the oldest daughter is a strong-willed and hot-headed tom boy. She's more comfortable with a baseball glove than a new dress but she does care about attracting the opposite sex. As a young teenager she has aspirations to travel and see the world. She feels that life keeps passing her by. She is frustrated that as a girl she doesn't get to have the same opportunities as boys. She decides to become a nurse and falls in love with Dr. David Spencer before calling off the engagement when a new doctor arrives in town. Mary Ellen marries Dr. Curtis Willard and they have 1 child, John Curtis, before he is lost and presumed dead after the attack on Pearl Harbor. Eventually she remarries Arlington Westcott Jones "Jonesy" and together they have 2 children, Clay and Katie. Mary Ellen decides to then study to become a doctor and she delivers 2 of Jason's children.
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Born: January 29, 1958
Judy Norton began acting at the age of 6 and was cast as Mary Ellen at the age of 13. She has been married 3 times. Since the Waltons, Judy has been involved in the theatre and spent 8 years as the co-artistic director for 2 theatres in Canada – CELEBRATIONS in Winnipeg and JUBILATIONS in Edmonton. Judy is very athletic and has earned two skydiving world records. She has been involved in competitive horse jumping, skiing, tennis, roller derby, and has trained as a trapeze artist and wingwalking. She competed 3 times on Battle of the Network Stars. Not one to slow down or be defined by her past Judy has recently focussed on a singing career.