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William Louis Gram Ph.D.

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William Louis Gram, Ph.D.,

November 24, 1930 - June 29, 2012

Bill entered this world as the third and last child of J.A. Louis and Ellen Gram. He was raised in Maryville, Missouri and exhibited a mid-western charm throughout his life. His father owned and managed a cement block plant and his mother had been an elementary school teacher. His older sister, Mary Rose, was a professor and administrator with a Ph.D. in nutritional research; his brother, Bernard, had an engineering degree and worked in construction management. Bill attended Maryville High School, two blocks from his home and following his older siblings, he graduated from Northwest Missouri State University where he earned his bachelor's degree. Upon graduation, Bill taught in Missouri and Iowa before heading back to school at the University of Missouri-Columbia where he earned a Master of Arts degree in history. From there, Bill began teaching history in the Los Angeles Unified School District. He taught for many years at Huntington Park High School and was a long time history professor at Los Angeles Harbor College. On a leave from Harbor College, Bill studied for his Ph.D. at the University of New Mexico and it was conferred in July 1984. Bill was also a proud and beloved member of Toastmasters #111, the San Pedro Elks Lodge #966 and the Holy Trinity Parish in San Pedro. He supported his church by serving on the Debt Reduction Committee. He served as a member of the Northwest Missouri Foundation Board, supporting the college he had attended as an undergraduate. Bill met his wife, Dorothy Wooldridge in 1962 and they were married in 1963. For 49 years they had an exceptionally wonderful relationship. Throughout Bill's life he demonstrated a kind, gentle, loving personality. Everyone who knew him was impressed with his goodness. His presence made a great difference in the lives of his wife, his family, friends and his students. Just a week before his heart stopped, he told a workman, "Don't waste your life. Love your family and enjoy your life." This is what he did and he will be missed by all who knew and cared for him. Bill is survived by his wife, Dorothy; his brother, Bernard Gram and wife, Marjorie; and numerous cousins, nephews and nieces who loved him dearly. Services will be held in his first parish, St. Gregory Barbarigo Church in Maryville, Missouri on Saturday, July 7 at 10:30 a.m. A memorial Mass will be held at Holy Trinity Parish, San Pedro, on Tuesday, July 10 at 10:00 a.m. In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to St. Mary's Cemetery in Maryville in care of St. Gregory Barbarigo Parish, 333 South Davis St., Maryville, Missouri 64468 or in care of the Bill Gram Scholarship Fund at Los Angeles Harbor College, 1111 Figueroa Place, Wilmington, CA 90744. Please sign the guestbook at www.dailybreeze.com/obits
and www.mcnerneysmortuary.com.
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Published in Daily Breeze on July 7, 2012
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