Vincent van Gogh

Vincent van Gogh

(1853 – 1890)

A post-impressionist painter, van Gogh’s work is known for it rough beauty and emotional honesty. If you ever see one of his paintings up close, stare at it for a while and you’ll see what people mean when they talk about his work. My two favorites are  “The Potato Eaters” and “The Starry Night”. I also like “Sorrowing Old Man”, but I’m not really an expert. I just like his stuff…..

He didn’t start painting until his late twenties, died at 37, and still produced 2100 artworks. He had mental health issues all his life, and shot himself(reportedly, but no gun was ever found) and died 29 hours later from infection of the wound. According to his brother Theo, his last words were, “The sadness will last forever”.

His story is way to deep and complicated to list everything here, it’s a fascinating read tho.

He is buried with his brother Theo  Auvers-sur-Oise Town Cemetery, Isle de france, France.

F. Scott Fitzgerald

F. Scott Fitzgerald

(1896 – 1940)

Regarded as one of the greatest writers of the twentieth century, he was an author and a poet.

The Great Gatsby, The Beautiful and the Damned, This Side Of Paradise, Tender is the Night, to name a few, kind of says it all.

“The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” was a short story of his. His wife was Zelda Sayre (1900 -1948). She suffered a lot and spent time in mental institutions, and he was an alcoholic from his college days. A troubled marriage to say the least. His works are still popular today and are required reading in some schools.

He put out some deep thoughts, that’s for sure. He is buried in  St. Mary’s Cemetery, Rockville, MD

Check out his stuff……

Howard Hughes

Howard Hughes

(1905 – 1976)

A brilliant  business magnate, a pioneer aviator, film producer, philanthropist, he was one of the richest men in the world. A lot of people remember him for the image that was projected of him at the end of his life, but he set speed records, made movies, and built a fortune so big even he couldn’t control it at the end. His net worth when he died was about 1.5 billion , and that is 6.5 billion in todays dollars. “The Aviator” is a great movie with Leonardo Di Caprio that explores his life. Just my opinion, but until the plane crash that nearly killed him, I think he had about the same neurosis’s and OCD’s as the rest of us, maybe a little more intense.  After the crash began the spiral.

This is how ahead of his time he was_ I saw a video of him of you tube, and it was a slow motion clip of his golf swing  he had done so he could study what he was doing wrong. That was the forties, folks, before television, before video, before instant replays, and waaaaaay before ESPN. I’ll bet people thought he was crazy.

Another strange one:

“The Outlaw” was movie that Hughes produced in 1943, and the notoriety of the film is basically Hughes’ obsession with Jane Russell’s Boobs. There is an argument for that obsession tho, LOL. He even helped design her special bra’s to accentuate her, uh, assets. In her autobiography, Russell said she secretly discarded it , and wore her own. He had so many problems with the Hollywood Production Code Administration,  the film wasn’t released until 1946.

He is buried in Glenwood Cemetery, Houston, Texas

Trivia:

Actress Gene Tierney is buried there too….her post will be up soon.

George Gordon, Lord Byron

George Gordon, Lord Byron

(1788 – 1824)

The most flamboyant of the romantic poets, Byron lived a life that is almost mythic.

Known for his excesses, he lived scandalously(huge debts, countless affairs with both sexes, even a rumored affair with his half sister, radical political beliefs), and lived his life as he wanted, trying(and it sounds like succeeding) to not be a hypocrite……. Only 36 when he died, it’s had to believe he did so much in that length of time. Even so, he is regarded as one of the greatest British Poets, and he is still widely read and influential.  She walks in beauty is an awesome poem, my favorite anyway. Read his works if you get a chance, and read about his life, it’s better than fiction. The “Byronic Hero” is the image that pervades his works, and the model is used by other authors.

He is buried in St. Mary Magdalene Church, Nottinghamshire, England . There were rumors that his heart was kept and buried by the Greeks(He died in Greece) but I’m not sure about that one.

Jack Ruby

Jack Ruby

(1911 – 1967)

Born Jacob Rubenstein, He was the killer of suspected presidential assassin Lee Harvey Oswald. Oswald was shot by Ruby on live TV on 11/24/63. Many people believe it was done to silence Oswald and protect others that were involved in the murder.

He was born in Chicago, served in the Army from 1943 – 1946, and moved to Dallas in 1947. That is also the year that he legally changed his name to Ruby.  His connections were shady, and conspiracy theories abound about who he knew(almost all of the Dallas police dept.), and if he knew Mr. Oswald.  A hundred different stories are out there, I don’t think they will ever figure it out now. Watch the courtroom interview with him if you want to see him hint about other powerful people’s involvement in Kennedy’s murder. Definitely lots of stuff to ponder.

He is buried in the West Lawn Cemetery in Norridge (Cook County), Illinois.

Trivia:

Shel Silverstein is buried in this cemetery too. If you’ve never read his stuff, google his writings. I’ll bet you read some of it, but just didn’t know it was him.

Christa McAuliffe

Christa McAuliffe

(1948 -1986)

A Teacher and  Astronaut, she was slated to be the first civilian in space. She was selected out of over 11,500 applicants, and as a payload specialist, she trained beside six other Challenger Astronauts. She planned to give two lessons from space, but instead the country watched in horror as the Challenger exploded on January 28, 1986 killing all aboard. People still leave things like pens, post its, notes, and little plastic apples, at her grave to honor her as a teacher. Very touching to visit. She is buried at the Calvary Cemetery in Concord, NH

Trivia:

Franklin Pierce, 14th president of the United States, is buried a mile or so away from Christa at the Old North Cemetery in Concord.

Al Capone

Alphonse Capone

(1899 – 1947)

Probably the best known of the 1920’s gangsters, he ruled Chicago for a time. His name is synonymous even now with the roaring 20’s, Chicago, bootlegging, and vice of that era. He was actually born in New York, committed his first murder in 1924. Witnesses were bribed and he was found innocent, and the killings peaked when he ordered “The St. Valentine’s Day Massacre” in 1929(seven members of the Bugs Moran gang were killed). He was finally brought down on income tax evasion charges and sentenced to 11 years. He was only about 33 when he went to jail. He died in 1947 from cardiac arrest resulting from third stage syphilis . He is buried in the Mt Carmel Cemetery in Hillside, Illinois(Cook County).

Trivia:

Several other organized crime figures are buried there too-

Machine Gun Jack McGurn

Frank Nitti

Dion O’Banion

Jake Lingle

Sam Giancana

Edgar Allan Poe

Edgar Allan Poe

(1809 – 1849)

An American Author and Poet, Best known for tales of Mystery and Macabre…..He is also credited with contributing to the emerging genre of his time, science fiction. No one is really sure how he died.

Some of his “Tales”:

The Raven

The Black Cat

The Tell-Tale Heart

The Masque of the Red Death

The Premature Burial

These are just a few….. Many of his works have been made into films.

He is buried in Westminster Burial Ground, Baltimore MD.

 

 

J.D. Tippit

 

Tippit Grave

J.D. Tippit (The “J.D.” stands for Jefferson Davis) was the police officer that Lee Harvey Oswald “allegedly” shot right after he “allegedly” shot John F. Kennedy. He is buried in Laurel Land Cemetery in Dallas, Texas.

Trivia:

Musician  Stevie Ray Vaughan is also buried at Laurel Land.