Funeral services for Tillman Leon “Tim” Graham of Basin will be held Friday, Nov. 23 at 11 a.m. at the First Baptist Church in Basin. Tim, 83, died Nov. 16 at Tenderheart Assisted Living in Evanston where he had resided since April.
Tim was born June 25, 1929, near Custer’s Battlefield in Montana, the son of Peter Warren and Letha Fyrn Sands Graham.
He married Pearl Deveraux of Hyattville March 12, 1950, in Hyattville. Tim and Pearl settled and raised their family in south Big Horn County.
Tm worked at various jobs in Wyoming and Montana until March of 1952 when John Snyder hired him to operate a Caterpillar for the Soil Conservation Service.
He continued to work for the SCS until 1958 when he purchased his first Caterpillar, “Old Yeller,” with the help of Bert Olsen of Otto, and established T.L. Graham and Sons Earthmoving.
Tim developed thousands of acres of agricultural and irrigation projects, leveled the land and built ditches and reservoirs to supply agricultural water, and prepared the sites for the Basin Recreation Park and ball fields.
He retired from dirt moving in 1994 and spent his winters in Yuma, Ariz., and his summers in Basin.
Tim enjoyed hunting, fishing, ATVs and snowmobiles. He inherited his love of music from his mother and was an accomplished fiddler. He was a member of the Wyoming Fiddlers Association and played for George H.W. Bush; the performance was recorded for the Smithsonian. He also played the piano, guitar, harmonica and spoons, even though he could not read music.
Tim was very proud of his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren and took great satisfaction in their education and success.
His wife Pearl in 1993, his parents, and his brother Boyd preceded him in death.
He is survived by his children, Tim and Sherry Graham of Basin, Patty and Bill Comeau of Evanston, Barbara and Robert Raynor of San Tan Valley, Ariz., Dennis and Debbie Graham of Riverton and Jody Graham and Anne Thompson of Cave Creek, Ariz.; one brother Charles Graham of Washington; sister, Birdie Job of Frenchtown, Mont.; his companion of 18 years, Mary Ransom; 13 grandchildren and 17 great-grandchildren.
Burial will be in Mount View Cemetery. A luncheon will follow at the First Baptist Church.
Memorials in Tim’s name are being received at Security State Bank, Box 531, Basin, WY 82410. Proceeds will go to the Basin Eagles Memorial Fund.