Westwood Memorial Park - Westwood Village, Los Angeles - Resting Place of the Stars

It seems only fitting that a city famous for its movie stars also has a place famous for laying those movie stars to rest. Westwood Memorial Park, located in the Westwood Village area of Los Angeles, serves as the final resting place for some of Hollywood's brightest and most famous actors and actresses.

Although not an extravagant parcel of land considering the residents, Westwood Memorial Park still draws out fans that wish to be just a little bit closer to their beloved stars. Visits to the park are made that much more memorable by a staff that is friendly, courteous, and well aware of the reasons for why some people decide to pay the park a visit.

The curious layout of the park makes it very accessible to park visitors, who can actually and easily drive their cars into the park and station them near the particular area they wish to visit. There is essentially one road that takes visitors in and out of the park. The circular road goes around the central section, which measures about 150 yards by 100 yards, and is the area where most of the "famous people" are buried. Various other sanctuaries are located outside of the central area, and also serve as the final resting place for other celebrities. The park itself does not provide maps that indicate the location of specific graves or grave sites, however most visitors find that the staff is very willing to help identify and locate a specific site if need be.

The park was initially known only to locals, especially considering its location and the difficulty involved in actually getting to and finding the cemetery. However, when famed baseball player Joe DiMaggio decided that the park would be the final resting place of one of Hollywood's most famous actresses, Marilyn Monroe, the park was suddenly thrust into popularity and notoriety. Soon, Westwood Memorial Park became the "place to be".

Besides Marilyn Monroe, dozens of other well-known celebrities call the park their home for eternity. Natalie Wood, famous for her roles in West Side Story and Miracle on 34th Street, was buried here after she drowned in a boating accident in 1981. Singer and songwriter Roy Orbison, Beach Boy Carl Wilson, and author Truman Capote are also buried at Westwood Memorial Park, as are Heather O'Rourke from Poltergeist, "The Velvet Fog" himself Mel Torme, Don Knotts, and Dean Martin.

By far the most famous resident at 1218 Glendon Avenue in Westwood, California is the blonde bombshell Marilyn Monroe, who was famous for her work in Hollywood as well for her relationships. Curiously enough, Marilyn Monroe is not buried in the central area of the park. Her burial site, which is actually in the area around the central burial site where the crypts and mausoleums are located, is relatively plain considering her fame and status. Still, the site is relatively easy to find - just look for the grave with the stains of lipstick left by fans that have paid Marilyn a visit.

leslie zowada
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Mar 13, 2010 @ 1:13 pm
I have been fighting cancer now for the past 4 years. I have won most of my battles but remain to reach the winner's finish line yet. My mother has been taking care of me for this entire time and has given up much of her life to take care of me. So much so that her husband took a healthcare CEO position affiliated with Johns Hopkins Hospital in the Middle East for three years and just a month ago, by way of email, told her that he wanted a divorce. Apparently he feels like she has not been around enough to be a good wife to him. My mom is in her early 70's and I thank God that she is very healthy and so wonderfully devoted to seeing me beat cancer and to go on to having my life back. I realize that she is doing so at the expense of her's and it breaks my heart when I bring up the topic with her. She just continues to tell me that I am her "baby daughter" and that she will always be my mom and that this is what "mom's do" when one of their children becomes sick. She is amazing and giving, and loving, and is the light of the cancer center I go to. Everyone knows her and love to see her when she comes in with me. The purpose of this email is that my mom has a hobby of reading obituaries and funeral programs and prayer cards that are passed out at services. She has many that she has collected over the years and I, too, know have a facination with the same type of readings. We have both been to your cemetary and spent many hours touching the stones, lying flowers and saying prayers over the many cemetary sites. Is there a publication of all of the burials (including the prayer cards and funeral program)that is in print that I may purchase for her? I know that she would be so thrilled to have that as part of her collection and would cherish them in her great grandfather's bible. I am on Social Security so if this were something that is quite expensive - unfortunatley - I would not be able to go forward with this request. As it is, my mother covers all my groceries and "extra's" not covered by my monthly SS. Again, another sample of how giving she is. Could you please let me know if such a publication exists or a way to gather that information so that I may lay it out nicely in a scrapbook memorial type of book for her. Thank you in advance for your assistance to my request.
All the best to you,
Leslie Zowada

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