Obituary of Irene Johnson Graham
In the early evening of December 6th 2018, at the age of 94, our Mom passed away in the care of the Chemung County Nursing Facility, to whom Irene’s children are all grateful. Our Mother’s battle with Dementia was a cruel time for a woman of great spirit, determination and strength. She was born the 13th and last child (a twin) of William and Elizabeth (Cufter) Johnson in Manchester, England. She was a veteran of WWll serving in the English Army Territorial Service where she met and married our Dad, William Graham, in 1944. She left England with daughter Carole and immigrated to the US having no idea of what lay ahead. Mom felt fortunate to have the love and support of the Graham family when she arrived. She became rich in children and, after getting us all in school, she took employment first at Iszard’s Department Store. After that she went to work for Hertz at the airport. Upon retirement she volunteered at Arnot Ogden Hospital and was recruited by many to help tend their homes and keep them company. Her English accent never left and was her trademark. She was predeceased by husband William, daughter-in-law Diane D’Aloisio Graham, son-in-law Steve Nikolaus, her parents and 12 siblings. She is survived by children Carole & Bobby Vines of TX, Kevin Graham & Judy Laura of Vestal, Libby & Marty Zwilling of AZ, David & Pam Graham of FLA, Barbara Nikolaus of AZ and Billy Graham (favorite) of Elmira, grandchildren Scott & Brande Graham, Karen & Brent Davis, Matt & Carrie Vines, Jessica & Kevin Paquin, Erica Graham, Mattie & Lee Elsworth, Hanna & Drew Heffner, fourteen great grandchildren and one on the way. We owe thanks to our long term neighbors, the Christofaro’s, Moffe’s , Long’s, Templar’s and Patton’s for their help in watching out for our Mom. She was a long time member of Trinity Church. A Memorial Service will be held on Wednesday, April 17th at 1:30 p.m. at McInerny Funeral Home, 502 W. Water Street, Elmira, with Pastor Wanda Copeland from Trinity Episcopal Church officiating. The family will greet relatives and friends from 11:00 a.m. until the time of the service. She will be buried with our Dad in Woodlawn National Cemetery immediately after the service. Our Mom was involved with the ARC of Chemung, 711 Sullivan Street, Elmira NY 14901, for over 50 years as a volunteer, committee member and as an advocate for those with special needs. If you wish, join us in donating to this very worthy organization in her name. MOM, words can’t describe what your influence did to get us all through life. We love you!