Passings: William W. Graham, 69; Philanthropist

Palisades Riviera resident William Welsh Graham, a lawyer, philanthropist and investor, was born May 2, 1948, in Washington. He committed suicide on December 20. His parents, Philip Graham and Katharine Graham, were the famed publishers of the Washington Post.

Graham graduated from St. Albans School in Washington and then in 1970 from Stanford University, where he majored in history. He graduated from UCLA law school in 1973 and then worked at Williams & Connolly for three years.

According to the Washington Post, Graham settled in L.A. and taught trial law at UCLA. He founded an investment firm,Graham Partners, which he owned and operated for about 20 years before dissolving the business in 2001.

The Washington Post noted that Graham then concentrated on philanthropic activities, including those in education, medical research and support for veterans. He was an early supporter of the PUENTE Learning Center, a Los Angeles educational and youth services organization.

He was a summer resident of Martha’s Vineyard, where he served on the board of the local hospital.

In a CNN story, his brother Donald Graham said that William spent years suffering from a heart ailment that was “painful and debilitating.”

Newsweek reported that William’s father, Philip, killed himself at his family home in 1963 after spending six weeks in a psychiatric hospital.

Graham’s marriages to Jorie Graham, Caroline Cushing and Jean Parker ended in divorce.

Survivors include his wife of seven years, Sally Lasker Graham; two children from his second marriage, Alice Graham of Portland, Oregon, and Edward Graham of Pupukea, Hawaii; a sister, Lally Weymouth of New York; and two brothers, Donald E. Graham of Washington and Stephen M. Graham of New York.

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