Maxine Mary McAlister Graham
Maxine McAlister Graham of DeRidder, La. passed away on July 18, 2023,
one day past her 101st birthday, at home in her easy chair.
She was born on July 17, 1922, in Fithian, Illinois, to
Harry and Elsie Mae McAlister.
She attended Oakwood High School in Illinois, where she met her soon-to-be husband.
George F. Graham.
Maxine attended the American Conservatory of Music in
After completing her studies for a Bachelor of Music majoring in voice, and upon
her fiancé George's return from battle in the south pacific as a marine,
they were married on August 20, 1945, in Fithian Illinois.
They soon after moved to the Chicago area, where they were longtime residents
of Mundelein, and later Gurnee.
She was also a virtuoso piano and organ player, and for decades taught innumerable
people voice and piano.
She was a decades-long member of the Chicago Symphony Chorus,
and also was a choir member/director/organist for several churches
throughout the Chicago area.
In 1994, She and George retired to Horseshoe Bend, AR, where for the next
several years she was the Music Director of the Horseshoe Bend United Methodist
Upon her husband's death in 1999, Maxine moved to DeRidder, LA to be near her youngest daughter Elizabeth.
She was in the choir of the First United Methodist Church in DeRidder for many years
She was preceded in death by her 4 sisters, Lois, Rosalia, Ruth, and Juanita,
and a brother Robert.
Those left to cherish her memories are her 3 children, Mary Graham Wilson, her husband Jerry of Jacksonville, IL. Elizabeth Graham Lund, her husband Wayne, and David Graham, of DeRidder. 4 grandchildren; Natalie Williams, her husband Jim of Jacksonville, IL. Matthew Wilson of Centralia, IL. Rebecca Lund Romero her husband Carmichael of DeRidder, and Adam Lund and his wife Raquel, also of DeRidder; 7 great-grandchildren, and a multitude of nieces and nephews and friends.
A special thank you to the good people at Brighton Bridge Hospice, who helped keep