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upstairs, step back outside the main entrance of the Freedom
mausoleum, and you'll find the ashes of Walt Disney
(1901-1966) in a tiny, individual garden just
to your right as you exit the mausoleum - look for a small statue of the
original Little Mermaid in the corner. If the small gate is open,
enter and look at the north wall behind that mermaid statue, and you'll
see Walt's headstone.
Spencer was one of the greatest actors of all time.
Who can forget him as Father Flanagan in "Boys Town"
or as the tortured soul in "Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde"?
Or his droll sense of humor in the comedies he made with Katharine Hepburn?
How do you find his grave? Well, there is a long
lawn running between Spencer Tracy and Errol Flynn's grave. At
the far northwest end of this lawn, you'll see a white statue of a naked
woman, crouching over and clutching a cloth to her front. This, the largest
statue in this small garden, reads "Morgenroth." You can't
miss it. Now, if you stand on the sidewalk that runs in front of this statue,
and then turn around so that your back is to the statue, you'll find the
Ranger's grave (lot #5492) along the edge of the grass in the first
row of markers, just to your right, five spaces in from the lawn's right
It's a shame that the door is usually locked, so the public can't enter, because buried in the Garden of Honor are a host of some of Hollywood's biggest names, in including Sammy Davis Jr., actors Robert Taylor and Dick Powell, singer Sam Cooke, studio mogul Samuel Goldwyn, actress Joan Blondell and director George Cukor.
I've never been lucky enough to find the doors
to this garden open, but some have. Here are photos of the Sammy
Davis's grave, courtesy of Phillip Senini, a fan who has been inside the
"All right, everyone,
line up alphabetically according to your height." - or
Best known as a manager, he led the New York Yankees
to 10 pennants in 12 seasons, and to 7 World Series championships
(including 5 in a row). He later managed the New York Mets from 1962 to
1965. He was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1966. (His actual
grave is to the right and up a row from the wall plaque.)
While he never achieved the status of Tracy or Flynn,
he was a well-loved character actor in his own right, a former vaudevillian
starring in a series of good-natured musicals in the 40's and 50's such
as "My Blue Heaven" (with Betty
Grable), and "There's No Business Like Show Business."
(with Ethel Merman.)
To find Dan's grave, from Casey Stengel's plaque,
simply follow the wall out towards the street (away from the statue of
Immortality); Dan's grave is right where the wall turns, just two spaces
in from the road, and next to a "White" statue of a woman with
in your car, head back down the hill. On your right, in between the large
statue of Michelangelo's David and the large statue of the Christus,
you will find another enclosed garden (similar to the Garden of Honor) called the Garden of Memory.
There are two small metal doors leading inside these walled gardens. One door is to the right of the Christus Statue. To find the other door, go to the David statue and walk into the garden to the right of the statue. There you'll find a large statue grouping called "The Mystery of Life." The second door to the Gardens of Memory is to the left of this sculpture. Alas, both doors are usually locked tight. It takes a special gold key, given only to property owners, to unlock the doors.
It is inside these walls that several major stars
are buried, including Mary Pickford (1882-1979),
Humphrey Bogart (1899-1957), Warner Baxter, Judy Canova, Victor McLaglen, and well-known character actors S.Z. "Cuddles" Sakall and Charlie Ruggles .
Unfortunately, unless you're a property owner - or know
someone who is - you can't get inside to see these stars' graves. (However,
I've been told that some groundskeepers will sometimes let visitors inside
if they ask politely.)
However, Mary Pickford's memorial is so large, and so close to the southeast wall that it is partially visible if you stand in just the right spot near the "Mystery of Life" sculpture. (Or at least it was. I'm told that the bushes have grown high enough to block the view now.) Here's a photo of her tomb. It's a fitting tribute to Hollywood's first superstar, who was the No. 1 box-office star in America 15 out of 17 years during the Silent Era,
(Click on the photo to see a larger image.)
(Her husband, Douglas Fairbanks, also has a large memorial. Click here to read about it.)
Here is a photo of Bogart's grave, courtesy of Phillip Senini:
She started out as a blues & pop singer, then moved on to Broadway (where she won the New York Drama Critics Award for best actress) and then to Hollywood, where she appeared in films such as "Pinky" and "The Member of the Wedding." She escaped the housekeeper stereotype in "Cabin in the Sky" and in "Stage Door Canteen" (which won her an Oscar nomination.) However, she returned to the domestic role for the 1950's TV series "Beulah" (which was based on a similar radio series that had made Ethel Waters the first Black woman to have her own radio show.)
To find her grave, go to the large Christus statue,
and right across the street you'll see the Gardens of Ascension. Walk in
and turn to your right. As you walk along the sidewalk to the right, you'll
pass several statues. Eventually, you'll see a statue of a woman holding
a child; its pedestal reads "Time Flies, Sun Rises."
Ethel's grave is in the first row below the sidewalk, about five spaces
left of this statue.
We'll now continue our virtual tour with a look at some of the stars' graves on the various lawns around Forest Lawn Glendale, including those of Jimmy Stewart and Robert Young, before heading down to the Great Mausoleum.
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