Regina Theresa Graham
1926 - 2020
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Regina (Jean) Theresa Coady Graham was reunited in heaven with her beloved husband, Bill, on May 2, 2020, just 3 days after what would have been their 70th wedding anniversary. They are surely dancing together again with their legendary grace. Jean was born in Brooklyn, NY on September 7, 1926. She was the sixth of eight children born to James Leo Coady and Regina Mary Drew, Irish Catholic immigrants from Newfoundland, Canada. Jean was raised in Park Slope, Brooklyn, where she excelled in academics, loved to dance and play sports. She was a member of St. Savior Church, where she also attended grade and high school, graduating in 1944. The first of her family to attend college, Jean graduated with a major in Chemistry from Notre Dame College of Baltimore, MD in 1948. It was there that she began her profession in education and love for teaching. It was also in Baltimore that she met the love of her life on a blind date, Bill Graham, a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy. They married in 1950 at her home church in Brooklyn, honeymooned in Sea Island, Georgia, and returned to reside in the relatively new Baltimore suburb of Rodgers Forge. There she and Bill began raising their family, before moving to Bloomfield, CT in 1956. A loving and loyal wife and mother, Jean created a warm, safe and secure home for her family of six. She encouraged strong faith, instilled a love of learning, and established lifelong traditions. She was an active parishioner at Sacred Heart Church, a Girl Scout troop leader, a member in the Mothers Circle and Garden clubs and was an avid bridge club member during those busy years. In 1970, Jean embarked on a new adventure and pursued a master's degree, graduating from the University of Hartford with an M.A. in Education in 1974. She also returned to teaching, spending many happy years teaching 5th grade at Renbrook School in West Hartford. "Mrs. Graham" had a deep and lasting impact and influence on countless students whom she often encountered during the later years of her life. Jean and Bill moved to West Hartford in 1976, where a new chapter of life included an expanding family of spouses and grandchildren, joyous family reunions and holidays celebrated throughout the years. Along the way, the family spent memorable summer vacations together, first in Ocean City, MD and subsequently on Martha's Vineyard. Jean retired from teaching in 1991, concluding her career in the Simsbury School system. She and Bill traveled extensively during their retirement, with their favorite trips being to Hawaii and the Midwest to visit children and grandchildren. During this time she also volunteered for the Friends of the Mark Twain House, was the membership chairwoman at the Town and County Club, and was an active member of the Saturday Morning Club. She and Bill worshipped at St. Peter Claver Church. In 2010, Bill and Jean moved to the Duncaster Community in Bloomfield and enjoyed making new friends and rekindling old friendships. Throughout her life, she maintained her devotion to family and faith, her wonderful sense of humor, love of learning, zest for life and unique sense of style. Jean will be deeply missed by her family and friends. She was predeceased by her husband, Bill. She is survived by her six children, William S. Graham Jr. (Jessica) of Springfield, MO; Patricia Heath (Raymond) of Avon; Suzanne Akim (Joseph) of Mililani, HI; Barbara Graham of Weymouth, MA, Jonathan Graham of Aurora, IL; Kathryn Mund (Christopher) of Manchester. She leaves 15 grandchildren: Emily Paula (Andres), Kate Heath, Sarah Thompson (Kris); Maureen, Kathleen and Shannon Graham; Meghan and Will Akim; Caroline Norris-Jones (Kelly), Austin and Dylan Graham; Wyatt, Clara, Laura and Eleanor Mund; and great grandchildren, who affectionately called her G.G., Francesca, Sophia, Leo, Shaelan and Drew. She is also survived by her sister-in-law, Denise Coady and many beloved nieces and nephews. Jean was predeceased by her sisters Helen, Marguerite and Loretta, and brothers, James, Joseph, Gerard and Raymond. She was laid to rest in Fairview Cemetery, on May 28, 2020. A memorial mass will be held in the future. Online expressions of sympathy may be made at

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Published in Hartford Courant on Jun. 6, 2020.
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