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James Dean, Tombstone and Grave, Park Cemetery, Fairmount, Indiana, photos

James Dean, grave and tombstone, Park Cemetery, Fairmount, Indiana.

The tombstone and grave of James Byron Dean, Park Cemetery, Fairmount, Indiana. Despite appearing in only three major movies, only one of which was released before his death, James Dean is widely regarded as one of the most significant cultural icons of the 1950's with his popularity continuing more than sixty years later.

Dean's first starring role was in East of Eden, with Julie Harris and Raymond Massey and was released nationwide on April 10, 1955, less than six months before his death. Next came Rebel Without A Cause, with Natalie Wood, Dennis Hopper, Sal Mineo and Nick Adams, released on October 27, 1955, which was the following month after his death. His last role was in Giant, with Elizabeth Taylor and Rock Hudson, released November 24, 1956, more than one year after his death.

Dean was a car racing enthusiast and purchased a Porsche 550 Spyder on September 2, 1955. Less than thirty days later, he drove the newly purchased Porsche on September 30 from Los Angeles with the intention of competing in an auto race in Salinas, California. At Cholane, California, Dean struck another auto which was making a turn in from of him. The accident killed Dean who received multiple injuries including a broken neck. There is some dispute as to the reason for the accident. The official report states the reason as excessive speed by Dean. A highway patrol officer who investigated the accident stated that he did not believe that the accident occurred at high speed. The driver of the car that Dean struck was not seriously injured and was cleared of fault in the accident. Dean was known to enjoy driving at high speed and had received a speeding ticket for driving 65 mph in a 55 mph zone less than two hours before his fatal accident.

James Byron Dean was born on February 8, 1931 in Marion, Indiana. His family moved later to California where Dean spent his early childhood years. At the age of nine, his mother died and Dean was sent to live with his aunt and uncle in Fairmount, Indiana where he remained until after he graduated from high school in 1949 and then returned to California. James Dean was killed on September 30, 1955 and his remains were returned to his hometown of Fairmount, Indiana where he is buried in Park Cemetery. His grave continues to receive a large number of visits from fans who leave a wide assortment of flowers, coins and toy auto race cars. Some fans have even left behind red lipstick impressions on the tombstone. See the additional photo below.

The tombstone on the grave of James Dean as viewed from the backside of the grave marker, Park Cemetery, Fairmount, Indiana.

The tombstone on the grave of James Dean as viewed from the backside of the grave marker.

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