RMW: the blog

Roslyn's photography, art, cats, exploring, writing, life

An unintentional visit to the Los Angeles National Cemetery


Los Angeles National Cemetery

I was on my way somewhere else. When I got off the bus I realized I was in one of those “you can’t get there from here” situations that often show up in my nightmares.  But a daymare? I won’t go into the whole pathetic story but after a while I was gritting my teeth to keep back tears as the further I walked the more convoluted the circumstances became. To make a longer story short I ended up walking a few miles through a construction area posted with signs to keep pedestrians out. I survived to tell the tale and at the end of the tunnel there was light. That light turned out to be the Los Angeles National Cemetery.

Los Angeles National CemeteryI’ve lived in Los Angeles all my adult life, which as it happen is a VERY long time. I have walked and driven past the veteran’s cemetery in Westwood a gazillion times, if not two gazillion. I always say, one day I must go inside the gates and walk around. So, although I had not intended it to be, yesterday turned out to be the day.

Well-known as a supporter of US troops all over the world, Bob Hope’s name pops up all over the Los Angeles area in relationship to the military. So it was no surprise to see this plaque on the front of the Veterans Chapel in his honor. And just in time as he died the following year at 100 years old.

Los Angeles National Cemetery

Driving by the cemetery I am always overwhelmed by the size (114 acres) and number of grave stones and markers.

Los Angeles National Cemetery

Once inside the gates I realized it was many times bigger than I thought.

Los Angeles National Cemetery

Interment is now closed at this cemetery.  I don’t know where a veteran in the Los Angeles area is now buried. There must be another veterans cemetery somewhere in the area? In the photo above the Getty Center appears on the hillside above the cemetery. As it happens that is where I was aiming for!

Los Angeles National CemeteryAs  close together as these stones are set I was trying to imagine how a lawnmover would get in there to cut the grass. As I found out, an army of gardeners with weed whackers walk through the grounds.

Los Angeles National Cemetery

Some of the graves are marked with upright stones as in the previous photos. In this area the stones are laid flat in the grass. I don’t know what the difference is. Cost? Aesthetic preference? I couldn’t find any information. Downtown Westwood is in the background.

Los Angeles National CemeteryI was rather pleased with this photo of the flag. The wind and clouds cooperated.

Los Angeles National Cemetery

I don’t know how many burials there are here. I do know that as far as military cemeteries go, the Los Angeles National Cemetery is second only in size to Arlington National Cemetery.

Los Angeles National Cemetery

Watching this guy trim the tree scared the heck out of me. I don’t like heights to start with but zooming around in that bucket must take nerves of steel!

Los Angeles National Cemetery

So I ended up having a very nice serendipitous afternoon after all. Below are some more photos of the cemetery. Click on any image for the slideshow:

All photos and content copyright roslyn m wilkins. Please feel free to pass along this post via email or social media, but if you wish to use some of our images or text outside of the context of this blog, either give full credit to myself and link to One Good Life in Los Angeles, or contact us for proper usage. Thanks!


Author: RMW

I am an explorer and creative person. I've had many jobs, careers and interests... everything in life and the universe fascinates me. Born in Brighton, England, I've lived my entire adult life in Los Angeles, California. A few years ago I rediscovered photography which is a great excuse to get outside and look. I'm also in the process of re-writing some of my unpublished short stories and possibly a novel. .

6 thoughts on “An unintentional visit to the Los Angeles National Cemetery

  1. All those headstones so sad to think of the lives cut short. The flag photo is excellent. How many photos did you take to capture that one? I know how difficult and time consuming getting a good photo like that one can be, I’ve tried many times…


  2. Pingback: Minor White and my day at the Getty Center | One Good Life in Los Angeles

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