Anchor

Hollywood Forever Cemetery, Hollywood, California

Hollywood Forever Cemetery, Hollywood, California

The anchor is an ancient Christian symbol that has been found in early catacomb burials.  The anchor was used by early Christians as a disguised cross.  The anchor also served as a symbol of Christ and his anchoring influence in the lives of Christians.  Just as an anchor does not let a moored boat drift, the anchoring influence of Christ does not allow the Christian life to drift.

 

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From Monumental to Simplicity

Glendale Cemetery, Akron, Ohio

Glendale Cemetery, Akron, Ohio

The Independent Order of Odd Fellows (I. O. O. F.) is a fraternal organization that formed in England in the 1700s as a service organization. The American association was founded in Baltimore, Maryland, on April 26, 1819. According to the I.O.O.F. Website, “Thomas Wildey and four members of the Order from England instituted Washington Lodge No. 1. This lodge received its charter from the Manchester Unity of Odd Fellows in England.”

Members of the Odd Fellows, like many other society members, choose to be buried in common burial grounds.   There are several Odd Fellows graveyards in the United States.  In other cases a portion of the cemetery is dedicated to the lodge members, as is the case in the Glendale Cemetery at Akron, Ohio.  Here a large monument was built to honor the members of the fraternal organization.  Behind the screens are the names of the members who belong to the lodge.  Members are buried in a space close to the monument reserved for Odd Fellows members.

Glendale Cemetery, Akron, Ohio

Glendale Cemetery, Akron, Ohio

The main symbol of the Odd Fellows is the three links of the chain which can been on top of the monument or on this simple metal marker that is placed next to one of the members buried in another part of the cemetery.  Within the three links are many of the markers display three letters,  F  L  T, which signify the organizations motto: Friendship, Love, and Truth.  This marker, however, is simple only displaying the links.

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Glass Angel

Rosehill Cemetery, Chicago, Illinois

Rosehill Cemetery, Chicago, Illinois

This stained-glass window from the Neo-classical Doric style Loring Family mausoleum in the Rosehill Cemetery at Chicago, Illinois, depicts an angel in contemplative prayer.

The stained-glass window is ripe with Christian symbolism. It is always difficult to look at a piece of artwork like this and know whether the sun is setting or rising. The setting sun represents death—darkness. If the sun in this scene is a rising sun it represents Christ’s resurrection.

The angel with resplendent green wings and golden robe symbolizes God’s messenger.  But angels also have the double role as the guide to Heaven. Here the angel looks to Heaven while his hands are clasped together in prayer. Praying hands represent his pious devotion.

Rosehill Cemetery, Chicago, Illinois

Rosehill Cemetery, Chicago, Illinois

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Would you believe…

Hollywood Forever Cemetery, Hollywood, California

Hollywood Forever Cemetery, Hollywood, California

Don Adams

April 13th 1923 September 25th 2005

Beloved husband, father and grandfather.

Proudly served his country during WWII.

Comedian, poet, philosopher, movie buff,

and never late for post time. A tough but

sensitive man with a sentimental heart

and a passionate soul.

 

He touched our hearts as Maxwell Smart,

secret agent 86 in the 1960’s classic TV

series, “Get Smart” and filled the

world with laughter that will

forever be remembered.

“Would you believe…”

As a kid, one of my favorite shows was Get Smart, a spoof about spies that parodied the James Bond movies which were all the rage at the time that also drew from the bungling and hapless Lieutenant Clouseau character in the Pink Panther movies.

The main character, Agent 86, Maxwell Smart, was played by Don Adams. His sidekick was Agent 99, played by Barbara Feldon. Her character’s name was never revealed during the show.

In the series, Don Adam’s character bungled his way through each episode fighting the enemy KAOS. The show aired for five years, from 1965 to 1970. The series received seven Emmy Awards including three for Adams for “Outstanding Continued Performance by an Actor in a Comedy” for his portrayal of the bungling CONTROL agent.

Don Adams (Donald James Yarmy) is buried in the Hollywood Forever Cemetery at Hollywood. A white marble angel stands over his grave holding a garland roses. There is also a bronze placard with the inscription above that portrays Adams holding his famous spy shoe phone.

The placard also gives some clues to what was important to Adams—his family. He was married three times—to Adlaide Efantis, Dorothy Bracken, and Judy Luciano—and had seven children. There is also the Marine Insignia on the placard which was a nod to his service in World War II. Adams lied to join the service. He served in the Pacific Theater and was wounded in the Battle of Guadalcanal. He contracted blackwater fever and was hospitalized for nearly a year before he recovered. There is also a reference to “never being late to post time”.  Adams loved to gamble.

The quote, “Would you believe…” was one of the many catchphrases that were spawned by the series, such as, “Missed it by that much!”, and “I told you not to tell me that!”

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Sisters

Mt. Calvary Cemetery, Columbus, Ohio

Mt. Calvary Cemetery, Columbus, Ohio

NAOMI G.

Daughter of

J & E. YARDLEY

DIED

July 5, 1849

AGED

5Y, 2M, & 8 D.

A sister reposes underneath this sod

A sister to memory dear and dear

to God;

Rejoice yet shed the sympathetic tear,

My little sister lies buried here.

 

Many funerary motifs represent children–shoes, seedpods, cribs, cherubs–but one of the most common is the hanging bud. The broken bud represents the flower that did not bloom into full blossom, the life that was cut short before it had a chance to grow to adulthood.

The rounded-top white marble tablet gravestone of five-year old Naomi Yardley in the Mt. Calvary Cemetery at Columbus, Ohio, displays the bud hanging from a sprig with three leaves.

On this gravestone, the hanging bud is completely detached and laying underneath the twig.   The broken bud represents Naomi’s short life of only five years.  The leaves here represent the Trinity—the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost.

Perhaps, though, the most poignant aspect of this gravestone is the tender epitaph from one sister to another.

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I pray the Lord my soul to take

IMG_3767HENRY A. BURR

ONLY SON OF

HENRY A. & HARRIET A. BURR

BORN [ILLEGIBLE] 1843.

DIED [ILLEGIBLE] 1850.

[3 LINE EPITAPH ILLEGIBLE]

The white marble gravestone in the Green-Wood Cemetery at Brooklyn, New York, for Henry Burr, 7 year-old son and namesake of Henry Burr and Harriet Burr, has eroded badly. The angel figure, her clothing billowing, hovers over a cloud while she cradles a small child.  His head is nestled into her neck, a gesture of tenderness and affection.  This small boy, presumably Henry, is buried next to his 8-year old sister, Harriet.

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Now I lay me down to sleep

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HATTIE A. BURR

DAUGHTER OF

HENRY A. & HARRIET A. BURR

BORN NOVEMBER 9TH 1851.

DIED MARCH 3RD 1860.

 

WE KNOW THAT GOD HAS BUT RECALLED

THE GEM THAT HE HAS GIVEN;

AND THOUGH THE CASKET MOULDER HERE

THE JEWEL IS IN HEAVEN.

Even though the soft white marble monument has suffered from erosion and many of the features of the three figures have been obliterated, it is still obvious the image represents two angels aloft transporting a tiny young soul to Heaven.

The faded epitaph reinforces the imagery on the gravestone…“the jewel is in Heaven.” The gravestone reminds me of the prayer many of us said as children as we bent down next to our beds:

Now I lay me down to sleep,

I pray the Lord my soul to keep,

If I shall die before I wake,

I pray the Lord my soul to take. Amen.

The little eight-year old daughter and namesake of Harriet Burr and her husband Henry Burr was buried in the Green-Wood Cemetery at Brooklyn, New York.

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