John A. Graverson, 93, Bremen, passed away Wednesday, June 8, 2016, at Miller’s Merry Manor, Wakarusa. John was born on Aug. 10, 1922, on the family farm south of Bremen. He was the first son of Theodore and Bernece (McMannis), and his grandfather’s namesake. Grandpa Graverson was absolutely delighted with his namesake and drove the buggy to town and passed out cigars to celebrate.
John grew up on the farm and graduated from Bremen High School in 1941. He worked at the Kingsbury Ordinance Plant, but wanted to serve his country and see the world. He joined the U.S. Navy in 1942 and worked as a radar technician aboard the USS Honolulu and USS Sangamon. He survived a kamikaze attack on his ship, and was home on leave when Japan surrendered in 1945. John met and married Lillie Marburger in 1947. He went to work for the local electric company – NIPSCO – and retired from that company in 1983.
He and Lillie had two children: Sheila (Glenn) Reed; and John (Betsy) Graverson. He and Lillie were together 64 years before her death in 2010. Today his family has grown to include five grandchildren: Christopher (Angela) Reed; Jason (Keri) Reed; J. Andrew (Lacey) Graverson; Abby (Sean) Dugan; and Benjamin W. Graverson; and eight great-grandchildren. John was preceded in death by his parents; two sisters; three brothers; and a great-grandson. His sister: Marie Klopfenstein survives.
John discovered golf in the 1950s and loved being on the course with his friends and buddies. In retirement, he and Lillie spent many winters in Florida. John was a 50 year member of the First United Church of Christ, the Bremen Lodge 414, and the Order of Eastern Star. Over the years, he filled many offices in those organizations. He was a lifetime member of the Bremen VFW Post 8972.
John loved his children and his extended family. He was always close to his sisters: Frances Papai Steinhofer; Marie Klopfenstein; and Lois Guard; and his brothers: Bill; Tom; and Ted. For many years he took wonderful care of his widowed mother: Bernece, and then his wife: Lillie. He was a kind, soft-hearted man who was always willing to help people. He was proud of his military service, and knew no strangers. One of the best “last days” was his Honor Flight in April. His enthusiastic embrace of life, his ‘keep active’ spirit, and happy face will be greatly missed by all who knew him, especially his beloved family. Be at peace, beloved father, grandfather, brother, uncle and friend.
Visitation will be held from 5-8 p.m. Friday, June 10, in Mishler Funeral Home, Bremen. Funeral Service will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, June 11, in First United Church of Christ, Bremen with one hour of visitation prior. Burial will follow in Bremen Cemetery with full military honors. The family prefers memorial contributions to be made to Dollars for Scholars, Bremen, or Honor Flight Northeast Indiana, Huntertown.