Wendy Jo Martin Graff, age 60, passed away peacefully at home, surrounded by loved ones, in Satellite Beach, Fla on Thursday, April 26th, 2010. She was born February 12th, 1952 in Erie, Pa., daughter of James P. and Elsie E. Martin. She graduated from Academy High School, followed by a career in customer service and administrative support. Wendy was a force of nature, living life to the fullest. She was a friend to many and a stranger to few. Her passions in life included spending time with her family and antiquing with her sister and mother. She loved spending time on the beaches of Erie and later in Florida. Her favorite pastime was cooking, creating amazing dishes, like her homemade salsa, for holidays and celebrations with her family and friends. Wendy was also an animal lover, having many loyal pets over the years. Her most memorable dog was a sheep dog mix named Waldo. While rescuing him from the middle of the road, she serendipitously met her future husband and the love of her life, Joel Graff. They left Erie to venture out to Arizona where they hiked the Grand Canyon together. After several years, they finally settled in Miami, Florida, where their only daughter, Heidi Graff, was born. Wendy was adored by her daughter and her husband and she loved life, enjoying every moment and leaving an everlasting impression. She was preceded in death by her father and mother and survived by family members including her husband, Joel of Buffalo, N.Y.; daughter, Heidi of Miami, Fla.; sister Heidi Martin Utley, wife of Dr. Jack Utley, of Fairview, Pa.; brother David Martin, husband of Vanessa, of Erie, Pa.; brothers-in-law David Graff of Buffalo, N.Y., and Jason Graff, husband of Sue, of Herndon, Va.; as well as nephew Dr. David Utley of Redwood City, Calif.; niece Carol Kulesza, nephew James Martin and niece Christin Martin of Erie, Pa.; niece and nephew, Nicole and Eric Graff of Herndon, Va.; and many wonderful cousins and great-nieces and nephews. Wendy will be dearly missed, her memory forever to be carried in the hearts of her family and friends. An intimate memorial service will be held over the summer. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made in Wendy's name to the Humane Society of Northwestern Pennsylvania, P.O. Box 3930, Erie, PA 16508, (814) 835-8360. Condolences may be sent to www.beachfuneralhome.com
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Published in the Erie Times-News on May 6, 2012