The 40 Year Old Bat Mitzvah

Jewish cemetery in Lake Elsinore

Posted in Uncategorized by Juliet on May 17, 2010

I have been doing research to create a Wikipedia entry for Congregation B’nai Chaim. My journey took me to a small cemetery in Lake Elsinore, where the Home of Peace Jewish cemetery has been annexed.

Something about this sign is both funny and poignant.

Most of the cemetery looks like this:

I know those conical green vases well from my time at Mt Sinai.

But off to the side, discreetly screened by an oleander hedge, lies the Jewish section:

The Jewish section is clearly marked off.

Also it's easy to find because of the names.

I wish I knew more about the history of Home of Peace. All of the headstones appear to be from roughly the same era regardless of when the person died.

I really, really like headstones. I don’t know any of these people. I have no tie to this cemetery other than community, yet I found myself choked up at some of the descriptions: rich, long lives, summed up in a few terse words.

Stones, rather than flowers, are traditional at Jewish cemeteries. This headstone reads, “The world’s greatest physical therapist.”

Stones, rather than flowers, are traditional at Jewish cemeteries. I like how this gravestone says, "The world's greatest physical therapist."

Agudath Achim, the really old cemetery in East Los Angeles where some of our relatives are buried, has many headstones with pictures like these.

If I ever am writing a novel and get stuck choosing names for characters, I'll have to remember to head to the cemetery.

Inscribed at the foot of this one is, “Abuela.”

The foot of this grave reads, "Abuela."


3 Responses

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  1. Wermeffex said, on May 23, 2010 at 6:51 PM

    Just want to say what a great blog you got here!
    I’ve been around for quite a lot of time, but finally decided to show my appreciation of your work!

    Thumbs up, and keep it going!


  2. Courtney said, on June 2, 2010 at 1:13 PM

    I’m doing a bit of family history digging and my great, great grandmother was buried in this cemetery. If you’re still in the neighborhood or going back, could you *please* try to find her gravestone for me? I’d love a picture of it- and also would love to know more about the history of the cemetery as well.

    Thank you so much!

    Jerusalem, Israel

    • Juliet said, on June 15, 2010 at 2:58 PM

      So interesting! What was her name?


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