Widow sells husband's tomb above Marilyn Monroe

LOS ANGELES Tue Aug 18, 2009 8:15am EDT

1 of 4. The crypt of Marilyn Monroe is pictured at the Pierce Brothers Westwood Village Memorial Park cemetery in Westwood, California August 17, 2009.

Credit: Reuters/Mario Anzuoni

Related Topics

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - An American widow is selling her husband's burial spot directly above film legend Marilyn Monroe so that she can pay off her mortgage.

Elsie Poncher has put an advert on eBay to auction off the tomb in Westwood Village Memorial Park, Los Angeles.

"Here is a once in a lifetime and into eternity opportunity to spend your eternal days directly above Marilyn Monroe," says the advertisement.

"In fact the person occupying the address right now is looking face down on her."

The burial plot is currently occupied by the late Richard Poncher, described by his widow as an entrepreneur who bought two tombs from baseball player Joe DiMaggio, Monroe's ex-husband, as the pair were divorcing in 1954.

Monroe died at the age of 36 in 1962. Poncher died at the age of 81 in 1986.

Elsie Poncher said she would move her husband's remains over one spot into a crypt intended as her final resting place if the sale was successful and she would be cremated instead when the time came.

Bidding for the plot opened at $500,000 and had reached $2.5 million by Sunday. No one from eBay was immediately available to comment on the bidding process or to give more details.

Poncher told the Los Angeles Times that she hoped to raise enough money to pay off the $1.6 million mortgage on her Beverly Hills home.

"I can't be more honest than that," she told the newspaper. "I want to leave it free and clear for my kids."

The Westwood Village Memorial Park is home to many celebrities, including Dean Martin, James Coburn, Roy Orbison, Truman Capote, Natalie Wood, and, from this year, Farrah Fawcett.

Playboy's Hugh Hefner bought the crypt beside Monroe in 1992.

(Writing by Belinda Goldsmith, Editing by Miral Fahmy)

FILED UNDER: