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Dr. Louis David Mendoza

Forest Lawn Cemetery
Location: GUS
(September 22, 1881 -  August 27th, 1954)

Dr. Mendoza was born in Cincinatti, Ohio in 1881. After graduating from the University of Cincinnati, he studied at Hebrew Union College, where he was ordained as a rabbi in 1906. In March of 1907, he visited Norfolk on an academic tour. During this visit, the congregation of Ohef Sholom Temple asked him to become their rabbi. He accepted, and remained in this position for the next 38 years.

¬†He quickly gained a reputation as an “outstanding orator” and became a prominent member of the Norfolk community. He was a leading proponent of religious tolerance who strove to promote understanding and mutual respect between Norfolk’s Christian and Jewish residents. As part of this effort, he would change pulpits each Thanksgiving for 25 years with Dr. Sparks W. Melton of Freemason Street Baptist Church. In addition to being a rabbi, Dr. Mendoza was a scholar whose depth and scope of academic pursuits added greatly to his nationally renowned capacity for public oratory. In 1945, declining health forced him to retire and become the temple’s rabbi emeritus. In recognition of his contributions to interfaith understanding, the Mendoza Chair of Religious Study was established in his honor at Norfolk Division of the College of William and Mary (now Old Dominion University).

Dr. Mendoza married Florence Myers Hect in 1943. They resided at 1300 Princess Anne Road, and are interred together at Forest Lawn Cemetery.


Dr. Louis D. Mendoza Dies; Ohef Sholom Rabbi Emeritus. Virginian Pilot. 8/27/1954.

Dr. Louis  Mendoza. Virginian Pilot. 8/28/1954.

Biographical information provided by Norfolk Bureau of Cemeteries.

Visitor Information

Visitor Hours: Sunrise to Sunset

Office hours: Monday to Sunday 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM

Free parking inside cemetery.

Admission Cost: Free

Address: 8100 Granby Street, Norfolk, VA 23505

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