Richard R. Graham, 77, a native and lifelong resident of Haverhill, died June 19 at the Veteran’s Administration Medical Center in Bedford.
Raised by Florence and Russell Greenwood, he graduated from the former Haverhill Trade School with the Class of 1959 and attended the Berklee School of Music. He was an accomplished saxophone player and also played clarinet in his own band.
An Army veteran of the Vietnam War, he served as a corporal and radio operator and earned his marksman and sharpshooter badges He was honorably discharged in 1965 as one of Massachusetts’ first Vietnam veterans.
Graham first worked at Western Electric Company and Raytheon and later Haverhill Tool and Dye, and finally he was employed for 20 years as the senior collection systems Operator at the Haverhill Wastewater Treatment Plant until his retirement in 2001.
He was a member of All Saints Parish of Haverhill, The Lorraine Post of the VFW, the Hannah Duston Chapter of the DAV and the Haverhill City Employees Union. An avid Civil War history buff, he enjoyed touring the battlefields of Gettysburg and Petersburg. He was also a New England Patriots fan and enjoyed fishing, camping, boating, dining out at his favorite seafood restaurants, and Rudyard Kipling’s “Captain’s Courageous.”
A generous and loving father, grandfather, brother, uncle, and friend, he will be sadly missed and lovingly remembered by his son, Gary Graham of Oahu, Hawaii, two daughters, Kimberly Mears of Haverhill, and Heidi Graham of Williamsburg, Va., four grandchildren, Dustin Mears, Patrick Mears, Jared Griswold, and Maikai Graham, brothers, David Greenwood and Norman Greenwood of Haverhill, and sisters, Debra Lavallee of Florida and Cindy Parker of Haverhill, and many nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his Graham siblings, Robert, Edna, Bella, Florence, Norman, Sonny and Esther.
Relatives and friends may call on Sunday, June 24 from 5-8 p.m. at Berube-Comeau Funeral Home, 47 Broadway, Haverhill. His funeral will begin on Monday morning at 9 a.m. from the funeral home with a Mass of Christian Burial at 10 a.m. in All Saints Church, Haverhill. Burial with military honors will follow in Saint Joseph Cemetery, Haverhill. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial donations be made to The Fisher House of Boston, P.O. Box 230, South Walpole, MA, 02071.