Peaceful 09

Steve Graham

June 18, 1957 ~ September 29, 2023 (age 66) 66 Years Old


To his sons, Steve Graham was renowned for his good looks, athleticism, charm and supreme manliness. Truly godlike among mortals, this fine figure of a man was an idol to children of all ages and the ultimate authority on all things mechanical and Monty Python-related. To those who loved him, he will forever simply be “the greatest”.

Steve was born at Kalispell General Hospital on June 18, 1957 to Lucille (PeeWee) and Keith Graham, the second youngest of six kids. In a life’s journey that spanned nearly all 50 states and multiple continents, this man lived a life worth remembering. From stock car racing and white-water kayaking, to saddle bronc riding, a brief attempt at hang gliding, and playing bluegrass banjo, he wasn’t afraid to try anything. He grew up reading great books, fishing and hiking in Glacier Park and later in life found his retirement bliss kayaking and hiking with our mom, family and friends, and teaching his grandchildren to fish off our family dock at the Ashley Lake cabin.

Raised a proud Evergreen Wolverine, Steve grew up tough and learned fast. He excelled in high school football and track at Flathead High School, with college scholarships offered in both. He opted for track at Montana State University, then promptly dropped out of college…because he was Steve. He married his love, Barb White, in Kalispell in 1981 and went on to earn his bachelor’s degree in business from the University of Montana in 1986.

He had career paths encompassing multiple trades and disciplines. The scope of his working life is too long to fit into anything short of a novel, but it included things like lumberjack, Culligan Man, director of a group home on the Fort Belknap Reservation, mechanic, carpenter, tribal college teacher, coach, school board member and cowboy. He was a jack of all trades and a master of many. For the last nearly 30 years before retirement, he and his brother-in-law Jerry built a corn seed distribution business in the Central Basin of Washington state. There, Steve and Barb and their boys lived a wonderful country life in the farming community of Warden and made great friends. His sons learned to ride horses, wrestle, and move irrigation pipe…a lot.

He was preceded in death by his parents, his older brother Dave, brother-in-law Charlie Thorne, Uncle Harry Burnell, and no-brother-good-in-law, Ken White. He is survived by his beautiful Graham sisters, Maureena Watkins, Nora Thorne, Marcie (Louis) Krutsch, and Margie (Richard) Strack and their wonderful children and grandchildren. He also leaves behind his in-law siblings, Lindy and Jerry Anderson, Bob and Laura White, Gwen White, and all their kids and grandkids. The core of his family was his wife of 41 years, Barb, and his sons. Cooper and his wife Brittany of Moses Lake, Washington, are the parents of Vincent (7), Sebastian (4), Lucian (1), and Baby Girl due in December. Spencer and his wife Jenni of Covington, Washington, are the parents of Nyla (1).

To his family and friends, Steve is irreplaceable. He was the life of any gathering, generous, caring and fun. He was a beloved and loyal husband and friend and a cherished brother. He was an incredible father, grandfather, uncle, great uncle and cousin. There will never be another man like the one that was lost in the early hours of Friday, September 29, 2023. It was raining in the Flathead Valley that night, which was fitting for the loss of one of its favored sons.

Our family would like to thank the neurosurgical team and entire ICU and palliative care staff at Logan Hospital in Kalispell for their incredible skill and compassionate care. Your kindness will never be forgotten.

A memorial celebration will be held in the spring in Kalispell, Montana. Details will be shared as they evolve.

A memory page is available on the website of Austin Funeral Home in Whitefish, Montana. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the public school scholarship fund of your choice.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Steve Graham, please visit our floral store.


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