How Some Graves at Hollywood Forever Have Stayed Forever Green

March 12, 2014
1 Comments
Advertisement

It’s hard to remember that the Hollywood Forever Cemetery that now plays host to James Blake concerts and showings of “Point Break” had fallen into disuse and decrepitude by 1998. But the story of how the memorial park made a recovery also underscores the patchwork history of how Angelenos think about water.

Hollywood Forever’s story really starts with Jules Roth, who was born in 1900, a year after the cemetery opened. He owned the cemetery from his mid-thirties till his death. He loved porn, hated paying bills, and feathered his nest in the hills with the proceeds from selling off two lawns at the front of the cemetery along Santa Monica Boulevard.One of the things he never paid for was connecting the cemetery to city water.

When he died, in 1998, he left the place $9 million in debt and far the worse for wear.

Advertisement

Present owner Tyler Cassity took over that year. Maintenance was a distant memory by that point. He says the cemetery’s 60-some acres were brown. Areas that had been maintained had not been watered by a central sprinkler system, but by those old-timey rotating sprinklers attached to long hoses.

Wells on the property had been sold off to pay some creditors during Roth’s lifetime. Afterward, water was scarce.

But there were patches of green throughout the cemetery. Cassity says they were around graves belonging to members of Hollywood’s Eastern European and Russian communities. Maintenance might have been a joke to Roth, but not to the families whose loved ones were buried there.

“They would come and water their own graves, maintain their own graves and do plantings on their own graves,” he says. “So you’d have 60 acres of no maintenance but plots that were beautifully maintained along those cultural traditions.”

Cassity says those plots helped him imagine and plan for what Hollywood Forever should become.

Image Credit: Molly Peterson/KPCC

Source

CDFuneralNews

ConnectingDirectors.com is the leading online daily publication for funeral professionals with a reader base of over 45,000 of the most elite and forward-thinking professionals in the profession. With ConnectingDirectors.com we have created a global community through an online platform allowing funeral professionals to Stay Current. Stay Informed and Stay Elite.
Advertisement

You may be interested

Foundation Partners Group Adds Anderson-McQueen to FPG Family
Funeral Industry Press Releases
489 views
Funeral Industry Press Releases
489 views

Foundation Partners Group Adds Anderson-McQueen to FPG Family

CDFuneralNews - August 17, 2017

Orlando, FL – Foundation Partners Group (FPG), a leading provider of innovative funeral, cemetery and cremation experiences and products, has…

Jobs
5 views

Sales Professional – North FL/Georgia

CDFuneralNews - August 17, 2017

Wilbert Funeral Services Inc. is a wholesale product and service provider to the funeral industry. Our manufactured products include burial…

On Our Soapbox: The Truth About Cremation | FUNERAL nation 085
FUNERAL Nation
200 views
FUNERAL Nation
200 views

On Our Soapbox: The Truth About Cremation | FUNERAL nation 085

CDFuneralNews - August 16, 2017

Cremation truth and Social Media Screwup: Watch Ryan & The Commander tell it like it is on their soapbox! (more…)

Comments