Danamo’s Marilyn Monroe In Memorial


Marilyn Monroe

1926 – 1962

Memorial services in the chapel at Westwood
August 5th, 2001

On Sunday, August 5th, memorial services were held for Marilyn in the chapel at Westwood Cemetery in LA. These annual services were first started 18 years ago by Greg Schreiner’s LA-based Marilyn Remembered Fan Club and have been held every year since then.

The chapel is small, and this year so many people attended the services that not only all the seats were filled, the aisles were filled on both sides with people standing up, and there was also a crowd outside listening through the outdoor speakers.

Inside the chapel there was a beautiful display of cards and flowers for Marilyn.

Greg Schreiner, as usual, led the service and introduced the guest speakers.

The guest speakers were friends, co-workers, and others who knew Marilyn personally.

Mickey Song, who did Marilyn’s hair when she sang Happy Birthday Mr. President at Madison Square Gardens talked about that event.

Gloria Pall, a 1950’s pin up model who knew Marilyn and has written a book about her recalled some of her memories of Marilyn.

Penny McGuiggan was one of Marilyn’s co-stars in Some Like It Hot. She was the trumpet player in the band. She still has the actual trumpet from the movie! Penny talked about giving Marilyn some trumpet-playing lesssons, and she gave a salute to Marilyn on the trumpet.

Fashion photographer Joe Jasgur spoke of his brief professional acquaintance with Norma Jeane when she was just beginning her modeling career. He was attended by his wife, Debbie.

George Barris, the photographer and author of “Marilyn in Her Own Words” talked about his friendship with Marilyn, and his collaboration with her on that book. Sadly, Marilyn died while it was still in progress, but his memorable photographs of her still provided enough material to make this a great book.

Jack Allen, the author of “Marilyn By Moonlight,” discussed Marilyn’s influences on modern life, how she was ahead of her time in advocating women’s causes and race-relations. He also spoke about the mysterious circumstances of her death.

Kathleen Hughes, an actress who lost a part in “Ticket To Tomahawk” to Marilyn, talked about auditioning with Marilyn.

Stanley Rubin, the producer of “River of No Return,” and also is Kathleen Hughes’ husband, talked about working with Marilyn on the set. He said there was none of the famous problems with being late on the set, except for one of the raft scenes which was very dangerous to shoot and Marilyn was nervous about it.

Joshua Greene, the son of fashion photographer Milton H. Greene, talked about his work in restoring his father’s pics of Marilyn for his book “Milton’s Marilyn.” When he was a little boy Marilyn lived with his family, and she baby-sat him at times.

Finally, a tape-recording was played of Lee Strasberg’s eulogy for Marilyn, from her funeral in 1962. I found it eerie to listen to the actual eulogy there in that same chapel where her funeral was held.

And then Sue Ann Pinner sung “Do Not Stand At My Grave and Weep,” a song which was written for Marilyn by Greg Schreiner.

The memorial is attended by fans from around the world, celebrities, and the press.

One of the people who attended this year included this young lady, Carolina, a fan from Brazil:

Tom Kelley Jr., the son of photographer Tom Kelley (who shot the famous nude calendar pics of Marilyn,) was there with his fiancee Dorothy, who helped with admittance and seating in the chapel.

Pin up girl /actress Jeanne Carmen attended with her son, Brandon. Here is Jeanne with Marnie, a local fan who came dressed to kill… (but fortunately, there were no casualties!)

Marilyn impersonator Bettina came with a bus load of people from her gala event in Las Vegas to help raise money to benefit the Marilyn’s Children Foundation. Here is Bettina with Karen Motherway, the Marilyn impersonator who won first prize in the Ripley’s Believe It or Not Marilyn look-alike contest.

Here is Tam Bercaw, the founder and president of The Marilyn Museum standing next to the flowers and card presented to Marilyn’s crypt by the Norma2Marilyn Fan Club