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C. Graham Mendenhall, 89, formerly of Cape Girardeau, MO, passed away May 4, 2022, in Overland Park, KS.
Graham was born in Wichita, KS, on June 20, 1932, to C. Dewey and Gladys (Graham) Mendenhall. He grew up in West Allis, WI and graduated from Nathan Hale High School in 1950. In his youth, he enjoyed spending summers on his grandparents' farm in western Kansas, singing in the choir, driving cars and working at the local haberdashery.
A position with Allis Chalmers brought Graham to the Kansas City area in 1957. He later worked as a sales representative for Monroe Shock Absorbers before moving to Cape Girardeau to establish his own business in 1976. He was the founder and longtime proprietor of the Mr. Muffler shop before selling the business to retire in 1997. Instead of slowing down in retirement, he became a part-time driver for BART Transportation because he loved meeting people.
Graham loved all things automotive and most of his jobs and his hobbies involved cars. He enjoyed gymkhana car racing, tinkering with his beloved Austin Healy or MG sports cars, and watching the Indy 500. He enjoyed travel, listening to live music, Doberman Pinschers, and most of all laughing and spending time with dear friends. He had interests too numerous to mention and never tired of learning something new.
Graham is preceded in death by his long-time partner and best friend, Peggy Strayhorn, and his son-in-law, Steve Timmons. He is remembered by his family of whom he was very proud: daughters Lisa Timmons and Tori (Myron) Kottwitz, honorary family Penny Smith and Lee Strayhorn, grandchildren Menden (Cain) Scott, Amanda Mullaney, Ben Kottwitz, and great grandchildren Landon, Paxton, Cadence and Mallory.
Arrangements are being made by Johnson County Funeral Chapel in Overland Park. Burial will be at Memorial Park Cemetery in East Prairie, MO.
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