Even though former NYC mayor Ed Koch doesn’t plan to stop for death for several more years, he kindly stopped for one important task: having his gravestone prepared for that inevitable occasion. The irascibly unsubdued Koch will be laid to his eternal rest in Trinity Church cemetery in Washington Heights, where the inscription on the headstone will read:
He was fiercely proud of his Jewish faith. He fiercely defended the City of New York, and he fiercely loved its people. Above all, he loved his country, the United States of America, in whose armed forces he served in World War II.
Koch also included the last words of the murdered reporter Daniel Pearl on the stone: “My father is Jewish, my mother is Jewish, I am Jewish.”
The former mayor told the NY Times: “I’m not morbid. How many 84-year-olds do you know who are as active as I am? Not many. And how many 84-year-olds do you see in obituaries? A lot.”