Eric Graeser

Eric Michael Graeser

Monday, August 4th, 1980 - Sunday, October 4th, 2020
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Eric Michael Graeser, 40, a native of Louisville, Kentucky, passed away on Sunday, October 4, 2020 at his home in Great Falls, Montana following a short hospital stay. Eric relocated to Montana in January of this year for a work opportunity.

Eric was preceded in death by his grandparents, Emil and Nancy Graeser. He leaves behind his parents, Janet and Kurt Graeser, brothers Scott (Natalie) and Brian Graeser and grandparents, Jack and Norma Wessling. Eric was a thoughtful uncle to his niece, Elizabeth (with whom he shared his August 4th birthday) and nephew, George for whom he drew Star Wars and other characters much to George’s delight and our amazement. Eric had an abundance of aunts, uncles and cousins. Never having met a stranger, Eric had friends across the country. Eric was quick to put others at ease, always had a kind word and something humorous to share.

Eric had many passions in life including expressing his creativity through his work, drawing, painting, sketches, and other forms of art. He also enjoyed cooking, canning, charcuterie, home brewing, traveling, the outdoors, and cheering on his favorite teams.

He was a 1998 graduate of St. Xavier High School and studied graphic design at the University of Kentucky.

Cremation was chosen. A visitation for family and close friends will be held on Friday, October 16th from 3-7pm at Highlands Funeral Home, 3331 Taylorsville Rd., Louisville, KY 40205. A Mass of resurrection will be held at 10am on Saturday, October 17th at Church of the Ascension, 4600 Lynnbrook Dr., Louisville, KY 40220.

In lieu of flowers, gifts in his memory may be directed to Down Syndrome of Louisville or the Waterfront Botanical Gardens.
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Service Details

  • Visitation

    Friday, October 16th, 2020 | 3:00pm - 7:00pm
    Friday, October 16th, 2020 3:00pm - 7:00pm
    Highlands Family-Owned Funeral Home
    3331 Taylorsville Rd.
    LOUISVILLE, KY 40205
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Service

    Saturday, October 17th, 2020 | 10:00am
    Saturday, October 17th, 2020 10:00am
    Church of the Ascension
    4600 Lynnbrook Dr.
    Louisville, Ky 40220
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Interment

    Saturday, October 17th, 2020 |
    Saturday, October 17th, 2020
    Cave Hill Cemetery
    701 Baxter Avenue
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email


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Private Condolence
The Goose Gang sent flowers to the family of Eric Michael Graeser.
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Todd Hall

Posted at 10:12pm
Kurt, Janet & family - My thoughts and prayers are with you guys during this challenging time. I alway enjoyed talking with Eric and smile he always had on his face. Todd Hall, Louisville

Heartfelt Sympathies Store

Posted at 03:25pm
Please accept our most heartfelt sympathies for your loss... Our thoughts are with you and your family during this difficult time.
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Michelle Turner

Posted at 08:10am
Kurt and Janet, I am so saddened to hear of Eric's passing. It was such a joy to grow up next door with your family. I'm sending a cyber hug your way and sending prayers.

Janet Graeser Posted at 11:05am

Thank you Michelle. The Graesers and Yeagers were good neighbors to each other. Love and hugs to you and family.

the Goose Gang

Posted at 05:37pm
Sending love and peace to all who knew our friend and Smoking Goose's first employee, Eric "Easy" Graeser, who earned his nickname for working tenaciously but joyfully. Our "Easy" was so quick with a smile and a joke that strangers became friends fast. He followed his passions, worked hard to sharpen his skills, and loved sharing with his family and friends. It's a testament to his spirit that there are so many of us who miss him so much. ~ your Goose Gang: Smoking Goose & Goose the Market, Indianapolis, Indiana

From Smoking Goose's 2013 newsletter:

Eric is the first to complete our 18 month apprentice program! Two years ago, before Smoking Goose was even smokin', Eric followed his protein passions to Indy, leaving behind his hometown Louisville and his graphic design job to be Smoking Goose's first hire. He'd always had a penchant for cooking. "In my house it was either help cook or do dishes," he says. "Who would wanna do dishes?"

As part of the meatery's initial crew, he got a glimpse of what it's like to build a smokehouse from scratch...and knows first hand that it's not always meat magic. Cleaning out the back alley, sanding down bad paint jobs, and scrubbing warehouse floors weren't hazing, but they're not what most protein pupils sign up to do. Still, his commitment to learning the trade from the ground up won him the first spot apprenticing with Smoking Goose owner and butcher Chris Eley, who gave him the nickname that stuck. He goes after each task with a big smile but some fierce tenacity, too. Chris' frequent "Easy does it, Eric" just became "Easy."

Every six months, Eric rotated to a new area of Smoking Goose's production. More than packaging or even sausage making, his favorite stage was last. "Butchering brings the whole apprenticeship together," he says.

When he's not learning the tricks of the meat trade at Smoking Goose, Eric's likely hanging out with his pup, Mr. Beau (who likes University of Louisville basketball almost as much as Eric) or keeping up his design skills through drawing and painting. Keep an eye out for his new dry-erase doodles on the freezer in Smoking Goose's meat locker--they change each week!

From time to time, he lends his talents to special, limited releases at Smoking Goose like crowd-favorite "Ham Grenades," the hand-trimmed hamlettes Eric dry cured under coarse black pepper in the Gascon tradition. But if he had to choose one Smoking Goose meat treat that's most like his spirit, Eric opts for Coppa because, as he says, "It's complex and expressive." Mr Beau, indeed.

Janet Graeser Posted at 12:32am

Thank you so much for this tribute to Eric. I’m glad our sad news has spread to Indy. I preferred his Ham Grenades too. Hugs to the Goose Gang. Janet Graeser

Candice Melissa Daniel

Posted at 04:37pm
he was really good to Brian

Candice Melissa Daniel Posted at 04:39pm

Eric was really good to Brian

Candice Melissa Daniel Posted at 04:39pm

Eric was really good to Brian

Candice Melissa Daniel Posted at 04:39pm

Eric was really good to Brian

Janet Graeser Posted at 11:11am

Thank you Candice

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