June 3, 2014
The most lovely moment of my journey thus far, my hand on Andy’s resting place
When I arrived in Los Angeles on the morning of the 2nd of June, I knew there was one place I had to visit; and for some strange reason, I wanted to drive there in the late afternoon, when the day was winding down and I would be alone. I don’t know how other people feel about being at a gravesite, but I felt at peace and a certain calmness came over me as I drove into Forest Lawn Park and began my journey to see Andy Gibb.
I followed the direction I had written on my little yellow lined pad: Park near the Court of Remembrance. Facing Bette Davis, turn right and walk South past the sarcophagus. Yes, I was going in the right direction. What overwhelmed me were not the massive walls of crypts but the beautiful views of mountains and hills of greenery. It was breathtaking. There wasn’t a sound and no one in sight. Then I turned the corner and was headed toward the Southeast wall and saw a workman not far from Andy’s crypt.
The View From Andy’s Bench
I don’t believe that anything happens by chance; and after meeting Carlos, I am more sure than ever that this is true. Carlos has been building crypts in Forest Lawn for decades. He walked over to me and asked if he could help me, and I told him I was there to visit Andy Gibb. He smiled broadly, and I immediately felt at ease with this sensitive man, who just happened to be a Bee Gee fan. He walked with me to the crypt, and I noticed the white concrete bench across from Andy’s spot. This, too, had Andy’s name engraved on it. “An Everlasting Love” is the inscription on his crypt, and how fitting it is, for Andy is as beloved by his fans today as he was 30 years ago.
Carlos shared several stories with me about fans visiting Andy, and he asked that I keep them in confidence, which I assured him I would do. He walked me around the grounds, talking about Andy and pointing out some of his work. The statues are as lovely as I imagined they would be, and I felt that Carlos was very proud of the work he creates and it is clear that he feels a certain reverence for those interred here.
Carlos sitting on Andy’s bench
At moments I was overcome with sadness, and the next minute I was feeling euphoric. It’s difficult to explain, and I thought of Barry and wondered if he had been by yet to visit his brother. I wished Barry was with me as I sat on the bench and thought about how God had given four brothers the talent and strength to create music that would last for all time. I wanted to tell Barry that his brothers weren’t gone but right up over those beautiful hills that I looked upon, guiding him and loving him as he followed the path he was destined to follow.
One of the works of art near Andy’s gravesite
I knew that Andy’s father Hughie, was a short distance away, and I turned the corner and saw his name and I somehow knew that he was with his three sons, and they were all well and thrilled to see Barry singing to the world.
I returned to Andy’s bench and kneeled down in prayer and put my hands upon the bench. I thanked him for giving me some of the greatest moments of my life, and I thought of his concert in Saratoga Springs in 1978 and being excited about his every move. Then I reminisced about watching him on stage in “Joseph” in New York City and again in Los Angeles in “Pirates of Penzance”. These memories remain vivid because watching Andy Gibb gave me a forever memory that would always remain clear and bright in my mind.
It has been a hectic few weeks, traveling around the country with The Mythology Tour, and there is a certain amount of stress involved, not wanting to let the fans down and trying to write and take photos everyone will enjoy and appreciate. I can only imagine what Barry has felt, knowing that the world of Bee Gee fans is watching his every note and move. However, when I sat on that bench and looked out over those hills, it all came into perspective so quickly. Each of us has a path and “there is a time for every purpose under heaven”. We all need to get on with things and do the best we can do. Andy, Maurice and Robin did their part, and Barry continues on for all of them.
As I said goodbye to Carlos and walked to my car, I felt uplifted and hopeful. It had been the best of days, and I was grateful.