Food scientist Donald C.W. Graham dies at age 78

Donald C. W. Graham, professor emeritus of food science, died Aug. 24 at Hospicare in Ithaca.

Born in Boston, Ga., the oldest of 11 children, Graham earned his bachelor's degree in zoology from Fort Valley State College and master's degree in foods and nutrition at the Tuskegee Institute. After working as a research assistant and instructor in nutrition at Tuskegee from 1961 to 1964, he earned a Ph.D. in food science at Cornell in 1971, when he also was hired as an assistant professor. He became associate professor in 1977 and retired in 1994.

Graham's academic fields of interest included food fermentation, food microbiology, food mycology and international food science. In addition to his research and teaching duties, he served on many departmental, college, university, and national committees and professional organizations and as an adviser and mentor to many Cornell students.

Active in the community, Graham was proud of his nearly 60 years of membership in the Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity, the first intercollegiate Greek-letter organization established by African Americans, which was founded at Cornell.

Graham is survived by his wife, Jennie, four children, six grandchildren, eight siblings and numerous other relatives.

A memorial service will be held Saturday, Sept. 4, at 11 a.m. at St. John's Episcopal Church, 210 N. Cayuga St., Ithaca. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the St. John's Church Music Fund or to Hospicare, 172 E. King Road, Ithaca.

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