Bridget Jean Collins, writer and playwright: born Scranton, Pennsylvania 10 July 1922; married 1943 Walter Kerr (died 1996; five sons, one daughter); died White Plains, New York 5 January 2003.
Jean Kerr was noted for the sharp wit she brought to her writing for the theatre, and the hilariously droll essays she composed about a Broadway-permeated life in suburbia. Her plays include Mary, Mary, one of the longest- running plays in Broadway history, but her greatest fame came with the publication of her book Please Don't Eat the Daisies. Based on her life in the country suburb of Larchmont, New York, with her theatre critic husband, four sons and assorted pets, it was an international hit that later became a successful film and a television series.
Kerr, who was frank about her dislike of cooking, housework and rising early (all traits which did not sit well with her suburban neighbours) would rise at noon then retreat to her Chevrolet, parked several blocks away, where she could write without the surrounding chaos of children and pets. The thing about having a baby, she once said, is that, thereafter, you have it.