GraffDorothyDorothy Ann Graff, age 84, formerly of North Milwaukee Street and New Port Vista Drive, Port Washington passed away at Columbia St. Mary’s Hospital-Ozaukee Campus in Mequon on Monday, December 1, 2014.

The past few years, Dorothy was a resident at the Harbor Village and the Harbor Club in Port Washington.

She was born on June 5, 1930 in Garland, TX, daughter of Albert “Monk” and Roxie Conner Willeford. She met her husband Gerald L. Graff of Milwaukee when he was stationed in Texas and he was friends with her sister Hazel and her husband A.L. Keeling.

On November 13, 1946, she and Gerald, recently discharged from the Army Air Corp., married in Dallas, TX. Her husband studied and became a jeweler. From 1952 through 1958, they lived in Palmyra, WI operating a jewelry store. Later in 1958, they opened G.L. Graff Jeweler on North Franklin Street in Port Washington. Dorothy was a homemaker and helped at the store for many years. The Graffs raised their seven children on Milwaukee Street. She was active in her community with her husband’s involvement through a number of civic organizations. She always kept in touch with family, loved traveling by motorcycle with husband and dear friends; volunteering as a eucharistic minister or meeting people at the store. Nana Graff loved her grandchildren and was partial to all children. She valued family and friends, always providing help where needed. Always a “Texas Girl”, she will be remembered for her, “Give me a little sugar” and “bless yer heart honey”.

Her husband Gerald preceded her in death on March 24, 1994. She continued to help at the store when possible with her son Myron and his wife Vicky until it closed in 2009. Dorothy became an international traveler when she toured Rome and London with her son Jim. She most recently was fond of her luncheon friends and afternoons playing cards.

Dorothy is survived by her children Myron (Vicky) Graff and David (Peggy Nothem) Graff, both of Port Washington, John (Sylvia) Graff of League City, TX; James Graff of Houston, TX and Robert (Renee) Graff of Waxahachie, TX; 14 grandchildren Michael Graff, Falon Graff, Cheryl Ross, Kelly Gnodtke, David Abramouski, Jessica Vaughan, Doug Hejny, Keith Hejny, Jason Graff, Charday VanOstrand, Candice Graff, Brianna Graff, Jessica Walker and Joshua Walker; 4 great-grandchildren Homer, Corbin, Matthew and Marcus; 2 sisters Lynda Morrison of Greenville, SC and Hazel Keeling of Henderson, TX; nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.

She is preceded in death by her husband Gerald, daughter Mary Hejny, son Thomas Graff, her sisters Rubye Hansen and Naomi Rucker and brothers Grady, Donal and Wendall Willeford.

Her Funeral Mass will be 12:30PM Saturday, December 6, 2014 at St. Mary Catholic Church, 430 N. Johnson St. Port Washington. Reverend Thomas Lijewski will be the celebrant. Visitation 10AM-12:30 PM Saturday AT CHURCH with a 10AM rosary. Entombment will take place at St. Mary’s Cemetery in Port Washington.
Memorials to the Port Washington Food Pantry, 1800 N Wisconsin St., Port Washington appreciated.



  1. To all the Graff Families:

    So sorry to hear of your loss. Always loved shopping at the store and all the good advice on what to look for. We, here in Arkansas, also have that wonderful saying of “Bless Your Heart”, so Bless Your Hearts as you deal with your loss. Please accept my condolences.

    Deb Bartelt Johnson

  2. Our deepest sympathy to the entire Graff family. Dorothy was a sweet lady who always had a smile and pleasant word to share.
    Mary and Ted

  3. Our heartfelt sympathy to the entire Graff family. What a blessing it was to know her and her smile and joy that she shared with everyone.

    Glenn & Beth

  4. With such sadness in my heart, but also joy in my heart for you Dorothy as you meet your family who left too early, and Our Lord Jesus. I will miss you each and every Thurs @ 11. You were my dear friend who I laughed and shared every and any story with. You were funny and easy to make you laugh, even when times were tough. You taught me so much with all your personal stories. You are one of the sweetest and purist examples of love. Always thanking everyone for anything and everything. A little treat went a long way with you. The whole salon loved you very much and we shared tears on Tuesday. But we are so happy you get to unite with your husband , your Mary and your Tom. You are free from all those physical troubles, and never have to wear those painful stockings again! You made it Dorothy. We now know the last chapter of your book. I am so thankful to God that he took you peacefully. You deserved that so much. My deepest sympathy to all of you, her family. I have heard countless stories about you all, she loved you all so much. And especially to Myron and Vicky and Dave and Peg, who spent so much time with her, may God comfort you as you miss her. Your mom was a gem! I will miss her dearly, Dorothy, I hope all your family was waiting at the river for you like we talked, and I hope you will be waiting there for me someday. You are my forever friend,
    Pam Huiras- your hair stylist

  5. Myron and Vicki: Our sincere sympathy. Your Mother was a lovely lady and we have many fond memories of both she and your Dad. Our prayers and thoughts are with you. Tom and Judy Thomas

  6. My deepest sympathies to the entire Graff family. Mrs. Graff was an amazing women, always kind to me, and especially enjoyed the children when we visited. You are all in my prayers.

    Beverlee Diederich

  7. Mike, Mom and Dad:
    I pray God’s peace and the comfort of His spirit will embrace you during this difficult time. Nana had a spark that we all enjoyed and will endure through your memories. My family and I will continue to pray for you as you accept her transition.

  8. I loved my Aunt Dorothy and when I visited from Texas, she always made me feel welcome. She will be missed. Prayers for her family as they celebrate her life.

  9. Jim

    Conn’s Real Estate/Construction and Facilities sends to you and your family our deepest sympathy. Our prayers of peace, understanding and comfort are being sent your way.


  10. My deepest sympathy to the Graff family. Mothers who survived raising large families are a special group. I just lost my Mom last week so I understand how difficult it is especially during this time of year. My hope is that both of our mothers are happy & at peace. We can find joy in knowing we will be with them again someday. God bless.

  11. Aunt Dorothy will be missed. I was one of the Texas nieces and when we came to visit she made us feel so special. I loved her with all my heart and will miss her smile and know she is making all her family in Heaven happy today. We celebrate her life and our prayers are with her family.

  12. Myron and Vickie: Our deepest Sympathy to both of you and your family. She was a very special lady.

  13. She was a great lady, always liked to talk to her. She always came into the bank with a smile on her face and good words for everyone. I am sure she will be missed.

  14. Jim you had a fun loving wonderful mom.
    I remember so many good times (John & Sylvia’s wedding) for one and many more.
    She will be missed.
    I love you like a brother and always felt like part of your great family.
    Warmest regards to you, John and your family.

  15. Our sympathies to the Graffs and extended families. It was evident at the last family wedding how much she was loved and loved all of you. We pray that your sorrow soon turns to bittersweet memories of her.
    God bless

  16. Wonderful lady. Loved shopping there and in later years being able to say hello whenever she was there. Helped me many times to pick out gifts.

  17. Sounds like your Mother had a great and rewarding life! Best regards Myron, to both you and your family.

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