More detail on this person: CAPT. PAUL B. GRAVES USMC (RET.) My Hero, My Grandfather By Zachary Paul Dotson January 8, 1997 My grandfather, Paul Bradbury Graves is my hero. He was born September 23rd 1938 in Dallas, Texas. He is my hero because he is a Retired Captain of the Marine Corps. I've always wanted to be a Marine. Just like my grandfather, I want to serve our country. He enlisted in the Marine Corps on October 9, 1958 and served for 18 months. He then took the entrance exam for the United States Naval Academy. He entered on July 5, 1960. It was during this time he was introduced to (but only by the written word) my Grandmother, Suzanne by her best friend, my Great Aunt Bonnie. Grandma and Aunt Bonnie attended the same high school in Orleans, France where both my Great Grandfathers were stationed in the United States Army. Grandpa and Grandma wrote to one another for two years. They finally met in June of 1963. Poppie asked Grandma to marry him that same week. My Grandfather (who I call Poppie) graduated on June 3rd 1964. He was then stationed at Quantico, Virginia. On November 14th, 1964 Poppie and Grandma were married. After graduating from Basic School he was assigned to Naval Flight School in Pensacola, Florida (where my Aunt Connie was born). The first plane he flew was the T-34 Mentor, the second the T-2 Buckeye, the third the F-9 Cougar. It was at the Marine Corps Air station at El Toro, California that he was transitioned into the F-4 Phantom (a Fighter and Bomber Plane). In August 1967, less than a month after my mother was born, my grandfather received orders to serve in the Vietnam War. It was there where he did one of the bravest (he says the stupidest) things in his life (he says the smartest is marrying my grandma). In September 1967, when he was stationed in Da Nang, Vietnam one of his missions was to fly through both Enemy and Friendly Fire to save his company, who was pinned down in a rice patty surrounded by the enemy. His plane was hit badly by the Enemies 12.5 Anti-Aircraft Artillery. He fought back with his 20 mm cannon, his Sidewinder and Sparrow missiles (never missing). He saved the men of his company and received the Distinguished Flying Cross. After returning from Vietnam, he remained in the Marines until 1973 when he and my grandma moved to Chico. It was at Chico State that he received his Masters in Business Administration. He worked for the Chico Unified School District for 11 years and is now enjoying retirement. I love my Grandfather very much and am very proud to be his grandson. On July 28, 2010, Paul Bradbury Graves departed from his Earthly home to rejoin his father and mother, Raymond Virgil and Genevieve Graves, and his brother, Virgil Graves, in our Father's Heaven. He is and will forever remain a hero to his entire family, not only because of his honorable service to his beloved country, but in larger part due to his amazing and loving example as husband, father, foster father, grandfather, great-grandfather, brother, uncle, son and friend. He is survived by: the love of his life, Suzanne Bryant Graves; his adoring children, Constance Dickens, Kathleen Dotson, Christine Graves and Thomas DuSell; and his loving sisters, Hazel Parker, Bonnie Dunn, Donna Story and Jan Smith. Zachary Paul followed his Poppie's footsteps in service to our country, enlisting in the United States Marine Corps in 2005. He is and will forever remain a tremendous source of pride to Poppie, as are Poppie's grandchildren: Amanda Suzanne McMillan, Ashley Lanae lsaacs, Colton Lewis Dotson, Christopher Hawk Dickens, Genevieve Dove Dickens, Teja Blue Kona Kerr and Ella Bethany DuSell; and his great grandchildren, Adron Xander McMillan and "Baby Under Development" lsaacs. Poppie, your family thanks you for your love and devotion. You are missed terribly but will remain forever in our hearts and souls. Memorial services will be held at Glen Oaks Memorial Park, Veteran's Court of Honor, on August 4, 2010 at 2:00 p.m. In lieu of flowers, donations in memory of Captain Paul B. Graves, USMC Retired, may be made to Vietnam Veterans of America, Chapter 582, P.O. Box 3070, Paradise, CA 95967; United States Naval Academy Alumni Association, Class of 1964, USNAF Gift Processing, 291 Wood Road, Annapolis, MD 21402 or Marine Corps League at https://www mcleague.com.
Burial information: Glen Oaks Memorial Park, Chico, CA
This information was last updated 12/01/2017
Please send additions or corrections to: HQ@vhpa.org VHPA Headquarters
Return to the Helicopter Pilot DAT name list
Return to VHPA web site
Date posted on this site: 04/14/2021
Copyright © 1998 - 2020 Vietnam Helicopter Pilots Association