Sunnyside Cemetery


Good article. My parents are waiting in my safe at home because I want them at Sunnyside. The niche wall is a good idea and I think could be paid for by preselling niches. There is no cooler place to have one’s ashes than in historic Sunnyside. I talked to the old caretaker a few years ago and he mentioned a columbarium wall across the back of the property. Is there info on site about such a project?

They also now make in-ground niches that take up only an 18-inch square of ground and can hold up to four sets of ashes.

If the city or the county took over maintenance of Sunnyside could they use the CCC for labor?

Glad to see your interest in this project.

Bob Joplin


I appreciate the article you wrote for the latest edition of the Beachcomber.

I thought of a couple of ideas that could help:

Each council person has a pot of discretionary funds. Could they, in the name of preserving City history, each make a contribution towards either getting the irrigation system installed or fixing the mold problem? $5,000 from each of them would be a good start.

The cemetery records are important historical documents. Is there a place at the new Main Library for them? Could a locally owned storage company donate the use of a climate-controlled storage unit to store them? Could Laserfiche, a locally grown company, donate the resources to digitize the records in order to preserve them for the future?

Are there any large irrigation companies that could be persuaded to pool resources to get the irrigation system working? Maybe one donates material, another donates excavation/grading work and another has a crew that does the pipe installation.

Without the work of the people buried in the cemetery, Long Beach would not exist. Can the LB Historical Society do more than one annual cemetery tour to boost awareness and fundraising for the repairs and maintenance?

Is the irrigation project something the students in the LBCC horticulture program could take on? It could be an awesome way for them to get hands-on experience, introduce them to civic involvement and maybe even open up paths for students considering careers in grounds keeping.

What about a “grave clean-up” event? Sort of like adopt-a-highway or adopt an animal. Start with large companies in the horticulture business – Armstrong Gardens, Monrovia Nursery, Moon Nursery, Roger’s Garden, Marathon Sod Company, even our local H&H Nursery. All of these companies have resources which, if pooled, could tackle what needs to be done. In exchange, there could be a tasteful monument sign – maybe donated by a company that makes grave markers – which acknowledges the generosity of the donors who made the cemetery beautification possible.

Lastly, what has to happen to get the city to step up and take ownership? Everyone who runs for elected office wants to leave a mark – something they can point to and say, “Look what I did.” What could be more significant than preserving the City’s history? If they’re unwilling to preserve what came before them, what is the chance that those who come after them will want to preserve their story?

I know people don’t like to think about death and cemeteries – but no one gets out of life without one or both. Long Beach has an opportunity to raise the status of our historical cemetery. It could be a beautiful place – like the old cemeteries in New Orleans or Hollywood Memorial Park – if we could get a few key people to lead the charge

Denise Mann



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