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Donal Dean Graves


1922 - 2016 Obituary Condolences
Donal Dean Graves Obituary
March 6, 1922 - November 26, 2016 Donal Dean Graves, age 94, died on November 26, 2016 in Oak View, California. Don was born on March 6, 1922 in Seattle, WA, and raised in Eagle Rock, CA. He graduated from Eagle Rock High School in 1940. During WWII, he was a navigator in the Merchant Marines. In February of 1947, he married his high school sweetheart, Beverly Jane Andrews. They moved to Blythe, CA where Don began his lifelong career with Mercury Outboard Motors. The family later moved to Huntington Beach, CA, followed by a promotion to Fond du Lac, WI in 1963. As President of International Marketing for Mercury he traveled the world, carrying with him one small suitcase and his gift for public speaking and foreign languages. In 1979 Don and Bev retired to Ventura, CA, continuing his passions of cycling, painting, metal sculpture and jewelry making. His memory lives on through his silver and bicycle spoke jewelry-- worn by thousands. He will be remembered for his commitment to family, his natural teaching abilities, and his outrageous sense of humor. Don was a self-made man and a lifelong learner. Don is survived by his wife of 69 years, Bev Graves, of Oak View; his daughter Jane Laughlin (Pat) of Manhattan Beach, CA, their daughter Morgan Laughlin (Logan Palm) of Torrance, CA; his daughter Julia Graves of Bainbridge Island, WA, her sons Cooper and Nathan Rooks; his son Gary Graves (Linda) of Fond du Lac, WI, their children Andy Graves (Sandy), Michael Graves (Christina), Katie Bosetski (Jeremy) of Green Bay, WI; his son James Graves (Maureen) of Colorado Springs, CO; and 3 great-grandchildren (Joey,Trista and Niya). He was preceded in death by his parents Millard and Arlene Graves and his sister Marylin Dixon. Dad always said, "The best thing a dad can do for his children is to love their mother." No services are planned at this time. We plan to celebrate both of their lives together, as theirs was a lifelong love story.
Published in the Los Angeles Times from Dec. 11 to Dec. 18, 2016
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