Bruce Ronald Graunke
February 26, 1951 – August 17, 2018
Bruce Ronald Graunke passed away peacefully in his sleep on August 17, 2018, in Katy, Texas, after a long battle with Parkinson's disease.
Bruce was born on February 26, 1951, to Donald and Aili Graunke (both deceased) in Seattle, Washington. He graduated from West Seattle High School in 1969 and started college at Western Washington State College (now Western Washington University), in Bellingham, Washington. After his first year, he transferred to the University of Washington in Seattle, Washington. After completing undergraduate studies, he and his first wife, Lori Hollis, and their daughter, Chaunaci, moved to Houston, Texas, where he earned his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology. He worked for the Houston Police Department as a staff psychologist before spending the remainder of his career with the Department of Veterans Affairs, first in Houston and then at American Lake in Washington, until his retirement in 2015.
Bruce had a great passion for his profession as a clinical psychologist and seldom missed a day of work. He also volunteered for National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) for over 30 years, including serving as the President of the Houston Chapter. Bruce fostered a partnership between NAMI and the VA, and he was the first psychologist to play an active role with the NAMI Veterans Council, where he served as secretary. In 2008, Bruce was named Psychologist of the Year by NAMI.
Bruce's daughter, Chaunaci, introduced Bruce to Martha Richardson (Marty), and they were married on June 4, 1988. Bruce and Marty moved to Washington in 2000 to be closer to family. Marty passed away on July 4, 2014. In 2016, Bruce returned to Texas, where he lived until his passing.
Bruce was known for his compassion for family, veterans, and friends and would always take time to connect authentically with those he met. He was also known to be competitive in Ping Pong, card games (especially Poker), and Chess, along with many other games he liked to play with family and friends.
Bruce is survived by his daughters Chaunaci Gage (granddaughters, Kasey and Mary) and Erika Lyles (son-in-law, Henry Lyles, and grandchildren, Taylor, Madison, and Aiden), and his brothers, Steve Graunke (sister-in-law, Michelle Graunke) and Brian Graunke.
A memorial service was held at St. Matthias Anglican Church in Katy, Texas on August 25th. A graveside service with a reception to follow will take place in Seattle, Washington at Forest Lawn Cemetery and Funeral home at 2pm on Saturday, September 15th.
In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to your preferred Veterans or Mental Health Organization.
- Graveside Service Saturday, September 15, 2018
Bruce Ronald Graunke
September 3, 2018
Bruce was my cousin. I have fond memories of growing up with Bruce. When my family would get together with Bruce's family my two brothers and I would have lots of fun playing with Bruce and his brother Steve. Since Bruce was the eldest in our group he would always look after all of us and make sure that everyone was safe and did not get hurt. Bruce was very kind and never had anything bad to say about anyone. Bruce always did really well in school and was notable for his photo graphic memory. He reached the highest level of Eagle Scout within the Boy Scouts. Bruce was a Clinical Psychologist with the VA and helped a lot of Veterans over the years. I also enjoyed playing ping pong with Bruce although I was never able to beat him. My favorite memories were the Easter holiday's we had together and hunting for Easter eggs in the Graunke's yard and the fantastic food and getting together with many family members and friends. This Easter tradition carried on when my kids were growing up. All of my family really loved Bruce a lot and will miss his kind spirit and thoughtfulness. Rest in peace Bruce. With much love your cousin Jim Chase.
Sharon and Ralph Barrea
September 1, 2018
Our hearts go out to the families of Bruce. He was a good son, brother, brother -in-law, husband, father, grandfather and very special to all his extended family and a great friend to all who knew him. Bruce will be missed. May he Rest In Peace!
August 31, 2018
Bruce was a big deal in the Graunke family and I remember the first time I met him on Treasure Island when I was invited to the family gathering through my boyfriend Tom (now my husband of 40 years), a close friend of the family. There was the idolized Bruce of family, friends, and neighborhood visiting from Texas. Immediately, I could see what the fuss was all about. Nicest guy who took a genuine interest in you and was well, good at everything. He was always upbeat and fun. God bless Bruce, Rest In Peace ! My sympathies and love to the Graunke family.