Harvey Pekar Memorial Will Be at Library, Not Lake View Cemetery


When internationally revered comics writer Harvey Pekar died in July 2010, he left behind plenty of unfinished projects — among them, no will and no burial plot. So friends and admirers promptly threw a benefit show at the Beachland Ballroom to help put the lovable grump to rest. What they didn’t get around to was a proper marker for his grave.

Enter musician, sculptor, and Beachland bartender Justin Coulter, who took on the task of designing a statue of Pekar to mark his resting place at Lake View Cemetery. The design consists of an image of Pekar emerging from an oversized comics panel, complete with a slate back — the better for visitors to personalize it as they please.

But as the concept unfolded, cemetery officials noted that scrawling upon grave markers has been frowned upon at Lake View for a few hundred years or so. And so they nixed the plan.

That’s when Pekar’s widow, Joyce Brabner, approached the Cleveland Heights University Heights Public Library, where Pekar’s carcass had been interred for much of his life.

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