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Graham Knight

Musician buried 48 years ago - dug up & his casket is now for sale on E-bay

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The Big Bopper died in the same plane crash as Buddy Holly and Ritchie Valens. He was buried back then in 1959.

Now the original burial casket is for sale on e-bay (the details are copied below)

I've know many musicians who have done strange things but it seems this rock'n'roll pioneer's family are even stranger.

read on - if you must!!

(Buddy Holly) BIG BOPPERS ORIGINAL 1959 BURIAL CASKET Item number: 220118994998

Starting bid: US $249,999.00 Place Bid >

Shipping costs: Pickup only - see item description for details

Ships to: Will arrange for local pickup only (no shipping).

Item location: Beaumont, TX, United States

History: 0 bids

Listing and payment details: HideShow

Starting time: Jun-04-07 17:36:05 PDT

Starting bid: US $249,999.00

Duration: 10-day listing

Payment methods: Money order/Cashiers check

See details

Meet the seller

Seller: bill-rockin50s( 1253)

Feedback: 99.9% Positive

Member: since Aug-21-99 in United States


The Original 1959 Casket That The Big Bopper Was Buried In

Buddy Holly (Charles Hardin Holley), Ritchie Valens (Richard Valenzuela), and the Big Bopper (J.P. Richardson) were killed, along with the pilot, on February 3, 1959 in that tragic plane crash that shook the world.

The Big Bopper was known worldwide for his hit "Chantilly Lace", followed by "Big Boppers Wedding", and others. He also wrote the #1 songs "White Lightning" (hit by George Jones) and "Running Bear" (hit for Johnny Preston).He set the world record for staying on the air as a DJ in 1957, and made what is recognized as the first music videos (for that particular purpose) in 1958, plus much more.

The Big Boppers funeral was held at Broussards Funeral home in Beaumont, Texas on February 6, 1959, and he was buried at Forest Lawn Cemetery in Beaumont. (See the black and white photo showing the casket of the Big Bopper at the funeral.)

Forest Lawn Cemetery wanted to exhume the Big Boppers body (and his wife Teensie) and move them to a different part of the cemetery. The Boppers son, Jay Richardson, agreed and this was completed on March 6, 2007. The Big Bopper was reburied in a new casket. (See the color photo of the casket on the trailer after the exhumation was completed.)

My name is Bill Griggs and I represent Jay Richardson and was present at that exhumation. I watched the burial vault containing the casket come out of the ground. I watched the opening of the vault to reveal the original 1959 casket. I also watched as that casket was opened and the body of the Big Bopper (which had been amazingly preserved) was removed and transferred to the new casket. I also acted as a pallbearer for the Big Bopper as his body was reburied at the new site in the cemetery. Therefore, I am a first hand witness to the fact that this is the original 1959 casket that contained the body of the Big Bopper. (You can read my report of the exhumation proceedings at


Since then, all the interior furnishings of the casket (cloth, pillow, etc) has been medically burned and the original casket cleaned and treated. Jay would like to see this piece of musical history end up in a museum of sorts, where it could be a centerpiece display, but will sell it to anyone who is interested. It is made of very heavy gauge steel and is extremely heavy. (Six of us could not pick it up and two more people were needed to do it.). Because of the size and weight, arrangement must be made to pick this up in person unless the buyer wants to arrange for freight delivery privately.

Payment is to be made with any type of transfer of funds, agreeable to both parties, within ten days of the end of this auction. The casket will not be released until such funds have been properly cleared and placed in the bank account of Jay Richardson.

This is not a copy or reproduction, this is the ORIGINAL 1959 BATESVILLE MONOSEAL CASKET that the Big Bopper had been buried in.

Bonus Items!

As Jay Richardson is in hopes that a museum will purchase this historic piece and to help with a proper display of this item, along with the casket, the buyer will ALSO receive:

1. The ORIGINAL thank you letter, dated February 16, 1959, from the Galion Metallic Vault company, the company that made the vault that held the casket.

2. The ORIGINAL thank you letter, dated February 12, 1959, from the Batesville Casket Company for using their patented Monoseal casket.

3. A set of color photos showing the grave being opened with a backhoe, the vault coming out of the ground, the casket out of the vault, and so on. Note, no photos showing the body will be included.

4. An 8"x10" b&w promotional photograph of the Big Bopper that Jay Richardson believes has never been previously published. (Copyright for this remains with Jay Richardson.)

This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to acquire such a historical item from 1959 that can be fully documented. Good luck.

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A tisket, a tasket he's lost his cosy casket.

I hope this doesn't start the digging up of all & sundry for a fast buck.

Didn't somebody sell Elvis's chunty not that long ago...or was that a bad dream I had?

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Didn't somebody sell Elvis's chunty not that long ago...or was that a bad dream I had?

Is that the one he was having a shite on when he popped his clogs?

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The Kiss one might be tacky, but at least it's slick. Frosty's example looks a bit 'roch'. I would've had the coffin standing on the other end, and tried to hide the leads.

I imagine someone has already used coffins as speaker cabinets.

I think that, to show some remorse for their shameless attempt at a cash-in, Mr Bopper's family should find a fan of his with a terminal illness and give them the coffin. They'd be chuffed to bits:up:

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