Wilson Graham

Wilson Graham, Jr, was born the first of ten children to parents Bertha Lee and Wilson Graham, Sr. Being the eldest, he modeled for his siblings the values instilled in him—a sense of family, integrity, resourcefulness, and a strong work ethic. He appreciated education because he saw it as the gateway to achieving a better life for himself. 

He attended East Technical High School, located in Cleveland, Ohio. Rarely would he miss an opportunity to announced that great athletes attended this school. Like him, one of the world’s most prominent sprinters, Jesse Owens, attended. In 1961, because of Wilson’s exceptional athletic abilities, he was named “Mr. Ohio Basketball.” After graduating from high school, he attended Kent State University, where he earned his bachelor’s degree.  

At Kent State, he met the love of his life, Jennifer Jenkins, who he married on April 16, 1965. Their union lasted fifty-six loving years and produced three children. In the summer of 1978, he and his young family moved to Houston.

A career educator, he worked as a teacher and counselor in the Houston Independent School District. After many years in HISD, he moved to Fort Bend ISD and he served as a counselor at Willowridge High School.

His love of various types of sports was infectious and his knowledge of different sports was unbelievable. Whether discussing one player’s stats or another player’s uniqueness, he was a storehouse of interesting information. With his unlimited knowledge, he created other sports enthusiasts: his wife, his children, and his grandchildren. He attended his children and grandchildren’s games and he attended both locally and far away professional sporting events. 

He enjoyed going; he enjoyed traveling and he did not care what mode of transportation he took to get there. He, in fact, liked to drive, so he would happily assume chauffeur duties and everyone else could just sit back and enjoy the sites. When riding with him though, you couldn’t help but to wonder how he was able to find some of those winding, seemingly going nowhere, short cuts. In a few short minutes though, amazingly your destination could be seen ahead. 

At home, he owned the distinction as “master fried turkey chef” because no one could make turkeys moister and more flavorful. The Graham household could also boast of having its own private barista because his coffee was undeniably some of the best ever. Before 5:00 am on a daily basis, he would brew a pot of coffee and bring his wife her first cup to their bedroom as they shared their morning together, watching “Morning Joe.” Plus, no one wanted to miss breakfast when he cooked because he could make the food smell incredible. 

Wilson’s memory will be cherished by his devoted wife, Jennifer Graham; son, Evan (Rachel) Graham; daughter Dana (James) Durley; grandsons: Aaron and Cameron Durley, Gabriel and Devin Graham; great-granddaughter, Viviana Durley; brothers: Larry Graham, Las Vegas, Nevada; James (Traci) Graham, Euclid, Ohio; Anthony (Mildred) Graham, Sr., Dayton, Ohio; Eurall (Roxie) Graham, Mentor, Ohio; and sisters: Jeanette (Harold) Varise, Cleveland, Ohio; Linda J. Love, Twinsburg, Ohio, and a host of nieces, nephews, and cousins.

He was preceded in death by his second child, a daughter, Margo Graham, his parents, Wilson Sr. and Bertha Lee Graham; two sisters, Barbara A, Graham and Doris King, and a brother, Arthur “Lew” Graham


  1. Diane Smith

    Please accept my condolence. I’m sure Wilson will be missed

    • TSgt Jean’-Louis Thompson, USAF

      To Uncle Wilson:
      You were the first and last person I saw arriving in TX. You always gave me great advice growing up. You are the model of being a man. I pray that you, Donald, and Slim are laughing together. I hope you are greeted by Margo and her smile. May God give you peace and paradise. I will miss you.

  2. John Schick


    So sorry to hear about Wilson’s passing. He will be in my prayers.

  3. Carol Harvey

    Jenny so sorry to hear about Wilson. This is Carol p!a contact me at440 252 7362


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