In Escrow ~ Saying ‘Bye to Favorite Neighbors

Goodbye Norma JeanThe girls of Westwood, I’ll miss seeing you. Marilyn. Natalie.  Peggy. Farrah. Donna. Eve. Eva. When friends and family visited us, one of my fav spots to show them was this gem with walking distance.  Now our house is in escrow, we’re downsizing to move closer to the beach! Sure, we’ll miss some neighbors, but I’ll REALLY miss this cemetery.

IMAG1611You can walk to the Westwood Mortuary from our soon-to-be-sold home.  A postage-stamp sized cemetery not visible from the street, this venue is tucked behind high-rises on Wilshire Boulevard, towering condos, the library and a neighborhood of homes. A few steps in, magically the traffic noise is gone, muffled by structures. You whisper as you slowly poke around, gingerly walking among headstones of some very famous folks.

Actors a-plenty. Rockers. Beach Boys. Talk show hosts. TV faces and movie darlings. Many old; some tragically quite young.

There are plenty of guys to visit, too.  Merv. Walter. Carl. Dean-o. Bob. Don. Frank. Eddie. Roy. Mr. Magoo.  You can read extensively about those who are buried there.

And then there’s Jack Lemmon, whose burial Larry and I mucked up a teensy bit, unintentionally. There is a movie theater in one of the high-rises, and when we walked there some years ago and arrived early, we went to the cemetery. Strolling in, we only saw a couple of business-suit-clad guys. We meandered. They watched. We sat. They watched us. Finally, making our way to the exit, one asked if we were visiting someone.  “No, just looking around.”  “OK, are you leaving now?”  “Yes.” (What’s HIS nosey business??) Back to the theater on Wilshire Blvd., we were surprised to see quite a few TV cameras right outside. “What’s going on??” I asked. “Jack Lemmon’s funeral.” OH LORDY, the guests were waiting in the tiny chapel for us tourists to leave. Next day, I wrote a card to Mrs. Lemmon apologizing. Made me feel a little better.

Non-celebrities, like Clementine Brown, also reside here.  She’s my all time favorite headstone – 1912. I like the font and graphic – a lady crying into her hands.

IMAG1606Yes, there is still room here for you if you want to rest in peace, somewhat unpeacefully. It is a stop for tourists, but never crowded. Just take an hour or two and you are done. It is a bit kooky, too, with no rhyme or reason as to how headstones are placed, all catawampus.

nonconformistPierce Brothers Westwood Memorial Park, 1218 Glendon Avenue,
Westwood, CA.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Worth The Whisk September 28, 2012 at 6:10 pm

Thank you, Paula. We’re excited about the new adventure and, of course, fretting all the details of downsizing from this home. But, gotta do it while we have the motivation!

2 Paula Pleasants September 26, 2012 at 1:23 am


I live in Westwood Hills, on Tavistock Ave., and I have seen the escrow sign in front of your home. I love your blog, and I’ll miss your wonderful stories about our neighborhood. I am so sorry you’re leaving the area, but I wish you and Larry luck and joy in your new abode. Come back to visit.


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