Ronald Henderson Graves, 81, of South Deerfield, MA, died at
home August 8, 2014, of lung disease. He
was born April 6, 1933, son of the late Herbert H. Graves, Jr., and Ruby I. (Magrath) Graves. His two
and Ellsworth, predeceased him.
Ron spent most of his life on Graves Street where he grew up next door
to his best friend, Bob Morrissey and later lived in his own home on Graves Street for
56 years. After graduating from Greenfield Trade School in 1950 he joined the Air
Force. He met Patricia Kelley while home
on leave and they were married in 1953 in Fairbanks,
Alaska where Ron was stationed
for two years. After discharge Ron
worked for the A&P, Millers Falls Tool Company, Hamilton Standard, John
Morrissey Grocery Store, Deerfield Academy, IF Supply Co., and Hillside
Plastics. Then he owned and operated
Ron’s Flower Shoppe in Greenfield
for two years before going to UMass Amherst (Food Services and Housing) for
about 16 years until his 1995 retirement.
Ron knew how to design, build, install or fix just about
anything. He often called himself a jack
of all trades and his home reflects his many abilities. His children, grandchildren and others have a
variety of cradles, bookcases, toy boxes, bureaus, and rugs lovingly made by
Ron. He had a strong interest in sports,
especially UMass athletics, and regularly attended football, basketball,
hockey, women’s basketball, lacrosse and softball games, as well as the weekly
Sports Luncheon where he made many good friends.
Ron was an active participant in his church, Masonic Lodge,
and the Melha Shriners. He had a short
acting career with the Green Room Players and was also interested in reading,
genealogy, flower gardening (especially roses and peonies), and cooking
(English muffin bread was a family favorite).
Later in life he discovered a love of electronic devices and collected a
great many of these.
Ron leaves his wife of 61 years, Pat; daughter Janice
Tringale and husband Frank of Lowell; son Michael and wife Sandi Harris Graves
of Greenfield; 7 grandchildren:
Gabrielle and husband Juvenal, Nicholas, Angelica, Michael Jr, Frank III
and wife Michelle, Hilary, and Isabelle; 5 great-grandchildren: Susanah, Katherine, Jacksyn, Marcus and
Violet; father-in-law Allen Kelley of Greenfield; beloved niece Bev; brothers-
and sisters-in-law; and other nieces, nephews, friends and neighbors. Ron’s huge presence in life is
gone and he will be missed.
Calling hours will be Tuesday from 4pm to 6pm at Wrisley
Funeral Home, 90 Sugarloaf Street,
South Deerfield. The funeral will be Wednesday at 11am at the
South Deerfield Congregational Church followed by interment at Brookside Cemetery and luncheon at the
church. Donations in his memory may be
made to South Deerfield Congregational Church, 71 North Main Street, South Deerfield,
MA 01373. Expressions of sympathy are available at www.wrisleyfuneralhome.com