- Category : Entertainment-Actor-Actress
- Type : GE
- Profile : 1/3 - Investigating / Martyr
- Definition : Quadruple Split (6,11,43,51,62)
- Incarnation Cross : RAX Planning 3
American actress, young, beautiful and intense when she appeared in her first stage role in "Take Her, She's Mine," 1961-62, for which she won a Tony. In 1963 she starred in the comedy, "Barefoot in the Park," and made her screen debut the following year in "The Carpetbaggers." After two more films, she withdrew from her public life until the early '70s.
Once married to George Peppard, 1966-1970, she had one son, Christian, born in 1968. She later married and divorced actor James Farentino.
In early 1977, she moved back to Los Angeles from New York City where she had appeared in "Caesar and Cleopatra" with Rex Harrison. Driving to San Francisco to visit friends one weekend, she found herself running out of gas. It was about 3:00 AM without much chance of finding an open station, so when she saw a sign, she turned off the freeway to find an all-night station. While she was checking out the pumps, three men came out of the darkness, very drunk. They beat her and dragged her into the bushes where all three raped her for a nightmare hour, then took her money and left. In pain and raw, she drove off, found a truck stop and an emergency clinic. They cleaned up the wounds but she did not tell them about the rape. It was too ugly, too dirty, too brutal to remember.
Ashley managed to forget it. In the next year she gradually put it away so thoroughly that it was not until she testified at the rape trial of a friend that she remembered, 16 years later. After staying with friends for five days, Ashley drove home. She told her nine year old son that she 'd had a car accident. Ten months later she sent Christian to stay with his dad and dropped out. She went to St. Bart's, an island in the Caribbean for the next three years, isolating herself. She had an almost irrational attitude of not wanting to be seen as a victim.
By 1981, she returned to the States, broke and needing work . She hosted an episode of Saturday Night Live and, from 1982 to 1984, appeared on Broadway and on the road in "Agnes of God." While starring in the Broadway production of "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof," she became friends with Tennessee Williams.
On the morning of 3/09/1986, she landed in Edmonton, Alberta, where she and Sandy Dennis were to discuss doing a play together. Customs officials thought her strung out, nervous and red-eyed. They searched her, and after finding cocaine and heroin, took her to jail in Leduc, a small town near Edmonton. Bail was set at $5,000 and she later had to return to court for fine and sentencing.
Her autobiography, "Postcards From the Road," was published in 1978. In TV, Ashley played the role of the eccentric Aunt Frieda in "Evening Shade" in the early '90s.