Leroy "Little Zeke" Graff, 76, died peacefully on Saturday, Feb. 27, 2010, at Prosser Memorial Hospital from complications of Parkinson's disease and melanoma.
He was born in Minatare, Neb. to George and Marie (Schnell) Graff.
He lost his father at the age of seven and was raised by a mother who instilled in him a belief in hard work.
He graduated from Sunnyside High School in 1952.
He married Luzana Edwards in Grandview on May 28, 1954.
Leroy spent his early career as an ironworker on construction sites. Later he worked as a fabricator and was part owner of Kenasco in Prosser.
Leroy was a kind and caring man with a quick wit and infectious sense of humor. He was well-loved by family and friends and will be remembered for his dedication and caring for those he loved.
Leroy is survived by his wife of 55 years, Luzana "Lou" Graff of Prosser; three sons, Gordon Graff (Karen) of West Richland, Gary Graff (Robin) of Henderson, Nev. and George "Andy" Graff of Prosser; grandchildren Christopher Graff (Renee), Tracy Helm (Adam), Elizabeth Conrad (Ryan), Sarah Pearson (Richard), Daniel Graff (Melonie), Michael Graff, James Graff and Riley Wessels; great-grandchildren, Cameron Helm, Ethan Conrad and Avery Graff; siblings, Betty England (Bob), Barbara Sackett (Lonnie) and Dorothy Johnson; sisters-in-laws, Juanita Graff and Sue Sears; and numerous nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents, George and Marie Graff; a brother, Rueben Graff; and a brother-in-law, Alvin Sears.
Visitation will be held Wednesday, March 3, 2010, from 4 to 7 p.m. at Prosser Funeral Home. A celebration of Leroy's life will be held Thursday, March 4, 2010, at 11 a.m. at the First Presbyterian Church in Prosser, with concluding services and burial to follow at Prosser Cemetery.
The family asks that in lieu of flowers, memorial contributions be made in Leroy's name to the Neurological Resource Center, 712 Swift Blvd. Richland, WA 99352 or to the donor's favorite charity.
Prosser Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.