Margaret Ann Grader

Margaret Ann “Markie” (Lewis) Grader

09/15/1925 – 12/27/10

Born on Sept 15th, 1925 in Minneapolis MN to parents Richard and Mary Lewis, Margaret passed away peacefully at home surrounded by her family following a courageous battle with cancer.  She grew up in Minneapolis where she attended Washburn High School. She then went on to earn her Bachelor of Arts from The University of Minnesota, and pursued a career in education.  As a young woman, she moved west to take a teaching job in Mt. Vernon, WA, where she met and married the love of her life, Herman T. Grader.  They were happily married for 37 years until his passing in 1989.  They had four children: Elizabeth Lee (Norton), Thomas Theodore Grader, Jane Ann (Carlson) and Glen Owen Grader.  She was also blessed with nine grandchildren.  Margaret taught elementary school for over 30 years, mostly as a kindergarten teacher in the Seattle School District and the Highline School District.

If her husband and family were her first loves, music was surely her second.  Blessed with a beautiful singing voice, Margaret was an enthusiastic member of the Sweet Adelines Women’s Chorus.  Her years of active membership with the Puget Sound, Lakeside and Pacific Sound choruses gave Margaret the opportunity to travel the globe and perform in such places as Carnegie Hall in New York, The Sydney Opera House in Australia, and the 5th Avenue Theater in Seattle. Along the way, she made many life long friends for whom she will be remembered not only for her musical talent, but also her warmth, grace and most especially her cheerful laugh.

In addition to her musical interests, Margaret dedicated many years to volunteer work with the Overlake Service League of Bellevue.  She loved the many hours spent volunteering at the Service League’s Bellevue thrift store, as well as being a part of charity planning meetings.

An amazing woman, Markie would be described by family and friends alike as warm, cheerful, humble and kind to all.  She was one of those rare individuals with the ability to make all those around her feel special and of value.  Throughout the battle she fought the last two years of her life, she virtually never complained.  She carried herself with amazing grace and dignity, and remained upbeat and cheerful to her final days.  It was often said by those who met her during this time that despite her illness, she was the “youngest 85 year-old” they had ever met.

Margaret’s family would like to offer a heartfelt word of thanks to Dr. Tanya Wahl, Oncologist at Overlake, and the many “Angels” from Evergreen Hospice and Maxim Healthcare in Bellevue.  Also to all of her many friends, who offered their help and prayers along the way, thank you all.

A celebration of Margaret’s life will be held at 2:00 PM on January 7th, 2011 at the Lake Washington United Methodist Church, located at 7525 NE 132nd in Kirkland, WA. In lieu of flowers, the family would request donations be made in Margaret’s name to her two favorite charities:  The Overtones Society, a charitable organization sponsored by Sweet Adelines International. Donations can be can be made directly to:

Sweet Adelines International
The Overtone Society – c/o Anita Larson
PO Box 470168
Tulsa, OK. 74137-0168:

Or, The Overlake Service League of Bellevue (donations can be made directly online at

14 Responses to “Margaret Ann Grader”

  • Carol Drew says:

    This is such a beautiful homage to a wonderful lady. Margaret fought the good fight, never complained, and was gracious and upbeat through it all. She will be dearly missed.

  • Marion Moss says:

    Both Jack and I would like to express our sincere sympathies on your loss. Seems like so long ago that we all lived in the same neighborhood as our children were growing up.

  • Leslie Parker says:

    I never met “Markie”. I work with Glen Grader. This is a beautiful tribute to a Mom, a wife, a friend, and grandmother, a wonderful earth angel called home.

  • Ruth Whitfeldt says:

    What a beautiful life she lead. We are all better becasue we were her friends………

  • Dawn Thompson says:

    I had the privilege of working with Margaret on several “money-making” events while singing with Pacific Sound Chorus. She took care of so many details for me with a calmness and assurance that was soothing and supporting. I was drawn to her happy loving countenace. I am so grateful to have felt her influence for good in my life. She will sing with the angels now; they are so fortunate!

  • Chris McCafferty says:

    Margaret was a wonderful friend and a great riser mate in Pacific Sound Chorus. She will be missed.

  • Lynlee Ritchie says:

    She was a sweet gentle lady with a warm smile and was beautiful inside and out. I will miss her.
    Lynlee -a Sweet Adeline friend.

  • Karla Grader says:

    Margaret was my Mother-In-Law for 16+ years. I am married to her youngest son Glen. There is so much I want to say about Markie. She has taught me so much about life. I think the Saint Francis Prayer most describs the life lessons I have learned from her.
    Markie was an instrument of Gods peace.
    Where there was hatred, Markie gave love;
    Where there was wrong, Markie gave forgiveness;
    Where there was discord, Markie gave harmony;
    Where there was error, Markie gave truth;
    Where there was doubt, Markie gave faith;
    Where there was dispair, Markie gave hope;
    Where there was darkness; Markie gave light;
    Where there is sadness, Markie gave joy.
    Markie was a woman who would rather comfort than to be comforted; To understand, than be understood; To love, than be loved.
    Markie will always live in my heart and I miss her very much!

  • Georgene Dickey says:

    I had the great honor of meeting Margaret for the first time this past year. I feel her wonderful personality came across to me on our first meeting. She was a very caring, wonderful woman. She will be greatly missed.

  • Cynthia Doyer says:

    Margaret Grader. That name always meant music, laughter, devotion, love, an awsome work ethic, and the most positive outlook on life one could hope for.
    Her family is fortunate indeed to have had her as wife, mother, and grandmother. And the lives of her many, many friends were enriched by her friendship and affection. Sing loud and long up there, Markie. We’re listening.

  • Terry Baird says:

    Margaret was a wonderful lady and will be missed by all who knew her! She brought her beautiful smile and enthusiasm to Pacific Sound Chorus for many years.

  • Kay Scharr says:

    Margaret was a warm and gracious lady. I had the pleasure of knowing her through Sweet Adelines and Overlake Service League. She was always there to lend a hand and a smile, and my life was blessed by knowing her.

  • Carol Chandler says:

    Margaret, as I knew her, was a gentle soul. She always had a smile. The world was a better place because her. I will miss her.

  • Glen Grader says:

    Thank you to everyone for posting your comments and beautiful memories of our mother. She was an amazing lady and we all will miss her dearly. And thank you to all that were able to attend her memorial service. It was an amazing day that we will cherish forever! If you would like to view the video tribute, here is the web address: Thank you again, and God bless.

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