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RIP Ole Friend Mike Graves 02/23/2015

posted Feb 24, 2015, 6:20 PM by Stones River   [ updated Oct 4, 2015, 11:38 PM ]

Obituary for Andrew Mike Graves
Andrew Mike Graves, age 78, passed away at his residence, February 23, 2015. He was a native and lifelong resident of Rutherford County. Andrew served in the United States Army and was a member of the Church of Christ at Windrow. He was a member of Alcoholics Anonymous for forty five years, Sons of the Confederacy and founder of Graves Construction Company.

Andrew was preceded in death by his parents, Albert Ewing and Katherine Graves; wife, Inez Graves; brother, Jerry Dewayne Graves, Ewing Graves; sisters, Marie Farmer; and grand-daughter, Heather Nicole Burns. He is survived by his son, Andrew Michael (Tina) Graves, Jr of Bell Buckle, TN; daughter, Denise Graves Burns of Murfreesboro; loving companion, Wanda Elrod; brothers, Joe Graves of White Creek, Jimmy Carter of California; sister, Mattie Lou (Roy) Covington of Almaville; grandchildren, Tiffany Kathleen Burns, Joseph Cody Burns, Andrew Michael "Drew" Graves, Ethan Graves, Emiline Graves; and five great-grandchildren.

A Chapel service will be Friday, February 27, 2015 at 1:00 PM with Billy Cole and Kevin Dye officiating. Burial will follow at Roselawn Memorial Gardens. Friends and family will serve as pallbearers.

Visitation with the family will be Thursday, February 26, 2015 4:00-8:00 PM at Jennings and Ayers Funeral Home, 820 South Church St., Murfreesboro, TN 37130. 615-893-2422.

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To Mikey and Denise,
Thank You for sharing your Dad with me.

Old Man Mike Graves    02/24/2015
After being around this man for close to three years as I was leaving the building one day he kinda yelled across the room "Hey Boy, Yes Sir. Can you drive? Yes Sir. Do you have a license? Yes Sir. You want to drive me and Bobby M. out to Yellowstone?" I don't really remember my reply but what I do remember was thinking, They are gonna carry me out there and kill me.
I didn't have any money but that was alright. All I had to do is drive. Ate a whole lots of steak on that trip. Tons of memories in the next 15 years. Ongoing for years until one of the last times I spoke with Mike was" Hey you wanna grab a bite? Yes Sir. Where you wanna go? The reply was always the same, "Lets go out to Cody Wyoming to the Irma Hotel and have a buffalo burger. We laugh and reminisce.
We've nearly made it to the top of Pikes Peak, the Ole van was sputtering and spitten and Bobby and Mike had more sense than I did. I'd say its gonna make it keep a trucking, and they both were convinced that we were not. So we had to find a way to turn around at about 12000 feet.
Mike was big on museums. I would bet that he and I have been in at least 100 through the years. We sat on a couch John Wayne use to sleep on. He took me to more than one Presidential home. He showed me where Jefferson Davis was captured May 10, 1865 in Irwinville Georgia.Mike would always say My President never surrendered. He wanted to see the Jefferson Davis Memorial in Pembroke, Kentucky so off we went. 351' obelisk on Kentucky limestone.
I know you remember Jessee James, Mike carried me to his home, we got to spend quite some time right where Jesse was cowardly killed with his back turned. Sound like a history lesson. Yup also a cultural lesson. We are all the same yet we are all different.
Thousands of miles in the same vehicle, lots of conversation. We talked about anything and everything and sometimes everybody. But when it got time to be serious, well thats just exactly what time it was. We saw some very hard times and bad times as well out there on the road. Once we drove through and area that had been completely destroyed by a tornado. A whole city gone, nothing but debris. Another we visited a 110' waterfall neither of us had ever seen. As we approached we heard cry for help. A young woman had fallen and he soon to be husband held her in his arms at the bottom of the falls. Crashes on the highway are a part of the journeys that we made.
Buford Pusser, yep we been there. Devils Tower, Mike waited while I walked around the base. Only a few times did I see Mike get a little nervous. Six blocks on foot in Old Mexico and well lets just say He and I had seen all we needed to see. Ah what a relief it is to get back across that border.
Mike loved Pastor John Hagee as do I. He set us out to San Antonio Texas. It Happened to be a healing service that we attended. When Pastor Hagee called people down front, Mike got up and took off, well guess who was right behind him. Another time Mike, SOB John and myself went to see Benny Hinn down in Nashville.I was broke sure nuff when I left there. I suppose you know that Mike Loved to give credit to The Good Lord.
"God is large and in charge" he'd say year after year. Mike was a United States Military Veteran. He didn't speak often about those days but when he would go meet up with his old buddies he might let out some old memories. I want ever forget his Buddy name Bob. Well were met him out west in unknown places and Bob was bad about using Gods name in vain. It offended me and I mentioned it a few times and that did no good. Then after awhile every time he would say Gods name in vain I would say Bob Damn Beep Beep. Well it didn't take long and Bob was beep beeping his self. Bob didn't take a liken to me.Mike would tell me about Bob Damn from then on. His name was changed.
Las Vegas, North Dakota, South Dakota, Mike carried me to where four states geographically came together. A monument with large Bronze marker. I stood on my head in the direct center while Mike got a photo. Even got to hear Mike preach a sermon in Lebanon Kansas the geographical center of the United States. I could go on and on. These are precious memories that rarely comes along in ones life. Mike paid most all the way, I was just their driver. Or was I? Mike Graves took me under his wing and we flew together. Like Johnathon Livingston Seagull a very small book everyone should read. I personally witnessed Mike over many years speak undeniable truths to Thousands of people in dire need. It was always the same truths, and the truths he spoke of were what he had lived. The language of the heart. Old Man Mike Graves was my friend and I was his Friend. To the end. As long as I have my right mind I will always be Grateful for the many many miles that we flew together. I had the opportunity to call him not so long ago and just to let him know how much he meant to me for taking this Ole boy and showing him what Culture really was.
Cultivation Of The Soul.