Graham, Parker Forbes
October 16, 1945 – March 8, 2021
Mrs. Parker Forbes Graham, 75, a resident of Reidsville, NC, passed away at her home surrounded by her loving family on Monday afternoon, March 8, 2021 after a lengthy illness. It was a beautiful day for our angel to ascend into Jesus’ loving arms and leave her disease-weakened worldly body behind.
Parker was born in Reidsville, NC October 16, 1945 to Dr. Thomas E. (Rabbit) Forbes and Julia Doub Forbes. She attended Salem Academy in Winston Salem NC, Centenary College in Hackettstown, NJ, and graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She received a master’s degree from NC A&T State Univ. Parker was a lifelong educator, teaching for 10 years in Head Start in Alexandria, VA, and later spending over 20 years teaching in Rockingham County North Carolina Public Schools. She was the AIG coordinator for Rockingham County secondary students and, among other accomplishments, developed and led the academic challenge cup (ACC) quiz bowl series. Parker was recognized as a Finalist as Outstanding Teacher of the Gifted by the NC Association for the Gifted and Talented and Rockingham County Schools in 2003.
She is survived by her husband of 31 years, Robert F. Graham, of the home, one daughter, Julia A. Redding of Reidsville, NC, sister Suzanne Forbes Howard of Reidsville, NC, and nephew Thomas Van Ness Howard of Wilmington, NC, and brother-in-law Gary S. Graham and family of Rancho Mission Viejo, CA, and cousins, Martha Rokahr and Anne Rokahr of Winston Salem, NC, and several other nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by her parents, brother-in-law Ken V. Howard and her niece, Sally Howard. Parker will also be reunited with her beloved cats Twirp, Chester, Sonny, Boo, Frisco, and Katy.
Parker’s faith was very important to her, second only to family. She was a lifelong devoted and active member of St. Thomas Episcopal Church of Reidsville, NC. She served her church community in many capacities over the years, including singing alto in the church choir, serving on the Vestry and ministerial search committees, the St. Thomas Episcopal Church Women as its head, and countless years as part of the St. Thomas “bazaar ladies:. She organized and headed a knitting group, Stiches of Love, that knitted blankets, scarves, hats and socks for babies and others in need. Parker was very precise in her knitting and her works were always in demand and loved by their recipients until her health forced her to stop. She also was a lifelong avid reader right up to her passing. She also enjoyed playing bridge and other card games, and while able, loved gardening around her home. She was a longtime volunteer at Cone Health - Annie Penn Memorial Hospital in Reidsville. She was an avid traveler and accompanied her husband on his countless trips to photograph and ride trains in scenic and remote locations across the US and Canada for over 30 years. Parker was a lifelong sports fan, and followed her beloved UNC Tar Heels and Wake Forest Demon Deacons and the New York Yankees baseball team. With her husband’s encouragement, she developed a love for ice hockey, and followed the Carolina Hurricanes eagerly.
Because of Covid-19 restrictions, a private funeral service and inurnment in the St. Thomas Columbarium will be conducted on Friday, March 12, 2021 at 2:00 p.m. A celebration of Parker’s life and full memorial service will be scheduled later in the year, once Covid-19 restrictions have been lifted. As Parker said, she wants her friends and family to not be sad and sullen, but joyous and happy at her transition, so get ready to party!! There will be a visitation conducted at the home of her sister, Suzanne Howard on Friday, March 12, 2021 from 5 to 7 p.m. after the service. In addition, her friends are welcome to come by Parker’s home and pay their respects any time after Friday, March 12, 2021. Please observe Covid-19 protocols during visitations, including masks. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that you please consider making a donation in Parker’s name to St. Thomas Episcopal Church, 315 Lindsey Street, Reidsville, NC 27320.
The family thanks the Doctors and staff at Cone Health Annie Penn Hospital and Moses Cone Hospital for the additional good years they were able to give to her. Especially, thanks to Dr. Dalton McLean of the Cone Health Advanced Heart Failure Clinic in Greensboro, NC, Dr. Edward Hawkins of Reidsville NC, and finally Amedisys Hospice of Burlington, NC and specifically Brittany Fraser, RN, for their expert and considerate care.
Citty Funeral Home of Reidsville, NC is assisting the family. Online condolences may be made at www.cittyfh.com