Margaret (Czapranski) Graham

March 4, 1930 ~ January 19, 2024 (age 93) 93 Years Old

Margaret Graham Obituary

Margie was born on March 4, 1930 to Kost and Pauline (Kulczycky) Czapranski in Brighton, NY.  She died January 19, 2024 in Ithaca, NY.

She is survived by children Mary, Dave (Kristina), and Ken, eleven grandchildren, brother-in-law Norman Graham, and many nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by her husband Jim Graham, sons Jimmy and Keith, her six older brothers:  John Chapman, Michael Marshall, Jimmy Chapman, Pete Chapman, Paul Czapranksi, and Hugh Czapranski, and several nieces and nephews.

Margie was deeply rooted in her Ukrainian heritage and anchored by her faith. She loved her family beyond measure. She never stopped talking of her wonderful times growing up. She was very close with her mother, she loved helping her father in the garden or the shop, and beyond the inevitable teasing, her brothers were wonderful and protective.

Margie met Jim when they both worked at Rochester Savings Bank. They wed before he was sent to Fort Sill Oklahoma where they had the fondest memories of beginning their married life. When Jim went to serve in Korea, she returned to Rochester, doing secretarial work in a top-secret department at Kodak during the war. All we know is that loose lips sink ships. And that Jim ended up using munitions labeled from Margie’s department.

As she and Jim adopted children, five in all, Margie devoted herself to homemaking with the same conscientiousness and competence that she brought to all her work. She was a talented seamstress and cook. Her attention to detail earned her the nickname Eagle Eye. When demonstrating her force-of-nature attitude, she might be called Sarge. Her kids had no problem believing that she had eyes in the back of her head. She made sure there was plenty of fun in the mix, too.

It’s unclear how she learned about nutrition, but she took it seriously. She kept her family well nourished with delicious home cooked meals.  Her grandchildren knew her best for the treats. Marge kept the post office afloat with massive shipments of cookies at every holiday. Adding her unique twist to her mother-in-law’s Empire Biscuit recipe, she began a tradition of sending her family special cookies on Valentine’s Day, her favorite holiday, and she kept it up for 25 years.

After the kids grew up, she added knitting to her repertoire of skills and went back to work for several years at the printing office at St. John Fisher College.

She’d stay up well past her bedtime or travel out of her way if it meant a little quality time with a beloved family member. She was genuinely interested and engaged in the lives of those around her. As a mom, she showed up at every event and field trip. As a grandma, she was a thrilled spectator at every play or ball game. When anyone was hurting or needing a hand, she was there.

She loved to dance the polka, to gather her family and feed them, to walk the rocky Maine coast and sit for hours watching the tides go in and out. She spoiled her cats inside and nurtured the birds, flowers, and wildlife outside. She laughed with her family and friends.

And the pierogis… Margie spread love in as many ways as she could. Those mundane pierogies did sacred work. They remain deep within us.

In honor of Margie, laugh with a sparkle in your eye, never back down from defending what is right, and make it a habit to show up.

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