They came to the cemetery in the dead of night to avoid any commotion.
Four workers used a backhoe at 3 a.m. to remove a 6-foot monument that has stood in the Confederate section of Hollywood Forever Cemetery for more than 90 years.
The granite boulder commemorating Confederate veterans was taken away after hundreds of activists requested its removal and some threatened vandalism.
“We felt we could no longer keep it safe here,” said Yogu Kanthiah, chief financial officer of the cemetery.
On Wednesday morning, only a fresh patch of sod remained where the memorial stood, inches from the graves of more than 30 Confederate veterans and their families.
Security and police stood by in case protesters showed up, but the cemetery remained quiet — except for media vans and an occasional squawk from the peacocks that roam the grounds.
“This is not a place to fight,” Kanthiah said. “This is a peaceful place.”
Since he began working at the cemetery in 1998, he said no one has complained about the memorial.
“This started after all that happened in Charlottesville,” he said, referring to violent clashes over the weekend in the Virginia town between white supremacist groups and counter-protesters.
Kanthiah said the decision to remove the monument was made by its owners, the Long Beach chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy.
The group will keep the piece in storage for now. If members decide to return the memorial to the Los Angeles cemetery, officials will consult with the state consumer affairs office and local police to follow necessary regulations, Kanthiah said.