Obituary for Norma Graffeo (Walker)
Norma Walker Graffeo
Age 94 of Burlington, MA, formerly of Winchester, MA died July 1, 2017 surrounded by her loving family.
Norma was born at home in Littlerock, WA on April 9, 1923. She was one of three sisters born to Elmer and Atlee (Ely) Walker. Her family lived on a farm until Norma was six years old. Her parents then swapped the farm for a 20 unit apartment house in Seattle, WA. Norma graduated in 1941 from Seattle's Broadway High School where she was an accomplished equestrian. She worked for three years in Seattle as a legal secretary and a registered accountant for the law firm of Skeel, McKelvey, Evenson and Uhlmann before deciding to go back to school. While attending the University of Washington she worked as a receptionist for Boeing Aircraft in the summer of 1944 and then as a telephone operator and receptionist for a local hospital in 1945. After graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Washington in 1948 she took an internship in dietetics at the University of Oregon. While working as a dietitian at Providence Hospital in Oregon she met her future husband Dr. Anthony John Graffeo. Their first date was a dance at the Festival of Roses in Portland, OR. They married June 9, 1951 and then relocated to West Medford, MA in 1953 where Anthony opened a medical practice and did surgery at the Lawrence Memorial Hospital in Medford, MA and the New England Memorial in Stoneham, MA.
Norma and Anthony had six children and lived at 8 High St., Winchester, MA for 47 years. She was a homemaker and did volunteer work as President for the Wilson Iannessa Foundation with Lawrence Memorial Hospital. They enjoyed traveling together in Europe with the Tufts Medical group and summering on Cape Cod and Gloucester, MA with the family. They also enjoyed a retirement home in Cocoa Beach, FL.
Norma was always kind, caring and found the good in everyone and everything. She never complained, got cross or raised her voice. Her gentle demeanor and warm smile always made us feel safe and secure. While raising a large growing family she found and created recipes to entertain many relatives, friends and business partners with ease. She was the love of Anthony's life and they enjoyed 63 years of marriage together before his death in 2015. She was and always will be the sweet sunshine in her children's lives, and she will be sorely missed by all that loved her.
Norma is survived by her children, Maria and her husband William Shields of Middleton, MA, Paul Graffeo of Delray Beach, FL, Carolyn and her husband Lawrence Spang of Winchester, MA, Michele and her husband Robert Cahill of Gloucester, MA, Anthony Graffeo of Beverly, MA, Michael and his wife Mary (Donlon) Graffeo of Humarock, MA and 12 grandchildren, 8 great grandchildren and 2 more great grandchildren on the way. She is also survived by her sister Gloria and her husband Dr. Robert Streeter of Palos Verdes, CA and her sisters-in-law Grace Fitzpatrick of Reading, MA, Virginia Crowley of Gloucester, MA, Carol and her husband Donald Ayrton of Andover, CT and many nieces and nephews.
She was predeceased by her sister Vivian and her husband John Nosler of Bend, OR.
Visitation will be held at the Lane Funeral Home, 760 Main St. (Rte. 38) WINCHESTER on Monday July 10th from 9-10:30am. Followed by a Mass of Christian burial at St. Mary's Church, 155 Washington St., Winchester at 11am. Relatives and friends are kindly invited to attend. Interment Oak Grove Cemetery, Medford.