Thursday, July 6, 2017

Some Celebrity Graves . . .



Lady Diana, Princess of Wales, died in 1997 aged 36. Her televised funeral was watched by a British television audience that peaked at 32.10 million, one of the United Kingdom's highest viewing figures ever. Millions more watched the event around the world. Originally Diana was to be buried in the Spencer family vault at the local church in nearby Great Brington, but concerns about visit caused her brother, Lord Spencer, to place her grave on an island within the grounds of Althorp Park, the Spencer family home for centuries.

After criticism that Lord Spencer had neglected the grave site, a multi-million dollar revamp was carried out on the oval lake and the island, the first major redesign of the estate in 350 years. On 1 July 2017, which would have been Diana’s 56th birthday, Prince William and Prince Harry gathered for a private ceremony at Althorp House to rededicate her grave. Both Kate Middleton, her brother Charles, Prince George, and Princess Charlotte were also included, as the rededication also marks the 20th anniversary of Diana’s death, which took place on 31 August 1997.


Merv Griffin

Mervyn Edward "Merv" Griffin Jr. (1925 – 2007) was an American television host and media mogul. He died in 2007 at the age of 82 from prostate cancer and is buried in Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery in Los Angeles. Although he had written in his book Merv that his headstone was to say "Stay Tuned", but it ended up being "I will not be right back after this message."

Marilyn Monroe:

Marilyn Monroe’s funeral, held at the Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery on August 8, was private and attended by only her closest associates. The service was arranged by Joe DiMaggio and her business manager Inez Melson and she was later interred at crypt No. 24 at the Corridor of Memories.

In 2009 the remains of Richard Poncher were moved sideways from the vault above Marilyn’s. Before he died in 1986 at the age of 81, he had told his wife "If I croak, if you don't put me upside down over Marilyn, I'll haunt you for the rest of my life." There he stayed for 23 years, on top of Marilyn face down but separated by a concrete slab until his widow auctioned his vault on ebay. She received $4.6m and paid off her mortgage, Richard was moved to another vault and an anonymous buyer can now fulfil the advertising promo that Elsie Poncher had used for her ebay sale: "Spend eternity directly above Marilyn Monroe".

The vault next to Monroe's was sold to Playboy publisher Hugh Hefner in 1992, for $75,000. It has been speculated that he may be the mystery buyer for the one above as well. Can you get a restraining order against a corpse for stalking?

Frank Sinatra:

Frank Sinatra died in 1998 and is buried at Desert Memorial Park, Cathedral, City, California. He died of a heart attack .

It’s ironic that a man of such fame and talent should have such an unassuming and ordinary grave site. The man himself was physically of small stature, although ex-wife Ava Gardner, once asked by a reporter what she saw in Sinatra, a ‘hundred-and-nineteen-pound has-been’, replied: ‘Well, I’ll tell you – nineteen pounds is cock.’

No big tomb or mausoleum for The Chairman, just a plaque that says the “The best is yet to come”, words from one of his songs. Sinatra, to the end, did it his way.

Oscar Wilde:

Oscar Wilde (1854 – 1900) died in Paris aged 46. He is buried in Père-Lachaise in that city, a cemetery that also accommodates Marcel Proust, Henri Salvador, Chopin, Delacroix, Bizet and Jim Morrison. However, unlike those others, a tradition began in the late 1990’s of leaving lipstick kisses on the tomb. Since then lipstick kisses and hearts have been joined by a rash of red graffiti containing expressions of love, such as: "Wilde child we remember you", "Keep looking at the stars" and "Real beauty ends where intellect begins". Surprisingly, perhaps, most are written by women. Merlin Holland, Wilde's grandson, said the lipstick had become a "serious problem" because the grease sinks into the stone. "Every cleaning was causing a bit more stone to wear away.” A glass barrier is to be erected.


. . . and some quick ones . . . 

Jack Lemmon: final role.

Rodney Dangerfield: the neighbourhood won’t be complaining much

Billy Wilder: dead writers tell no tales.

Mel Blanc: the voices of Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig, Tweety Bird, Sylvester the Cat, Yosemite Sam, Foghorn Leghorn, Marvin the Martian, Pepé Le Pew, Speedy Gonzales, Wile E. Coyote, Road Runner, and the Tasmanian Devil.

Edgar Allan Poe: Nevermore!

Leslie Nielsen: one last fart joke

Karl Marx: Highgate Cemetery, London.

John Wayne: here’s some words of wisdom for ya, pilgrim!

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