GOOD

Hugh Hefner was the face of America’s sexual revolution, and his bow-tied bunny was the official logo. He died Sept. 27 at the age of 91 from natural causes after living a robust life. While some may rightfully accuse him of objectifying women for profit, he was also an advocate for civil rights, freedom of speech, and the pursuit of pleasure.

And in the business world, Hefner was a world-class marketer. In fact, one of his last requests was so on-brand, it’s almost too obvious.


Hefner’s final resting place will be next to Hollywood icon Marilyn Monroe at the Westwood Village Memorial Park cemetery in Los Angeles. Hefner purchased the crypt in 1992 for $75,000. It was originally owned by Monroe’s one-time husband, baseball legend Joe DiMaggio, who sent roses to her crypt for years after her passing from a drug overdose in 1962. “I’m a believer in things symbolic,” Hefner told the Los Angeles Times. “Spending eternity next to Marilyn is too sweet to pass up.”

Photo by Alan Light/Flickr.

Hefner’s career in publishing was launched thanks to Monroe. Before she starred in classics such as “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes” and “Some Like It Hot,” she was a struggling actress and posed for nude photos in 1949 for $50. Hefner bought them five years later from Western Lithograph Company for $500 and published them in the first issue of Playboy. The magazine would go on to be a huge hit and kickstart one of the most recognizable brands in the world. Unfortunately, Hefner never paid Monroe directly, if at all, for the photos.

Monroe had been gone for 30 years by the time Hefner bought the crypt, so there’s no telling whether she approves of his new residence. The story picked up steam on social media this week, and Hefner is being applauded and derided for his decision to spend eternity next to the woman he called “the ultimate blonde.”

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