Cover photo for Polly (Cochran)  Grabow's Obituary
Polly (Cochran)  Grabow Profile Photo
1929 Polly 2021

Polly (Cochran) Grabow

May 28, 1929 — August 29, 2021


Polly Cochran Grabow was 92 years old when she passed away on Sunday, August 29, 2021 in Carmel, IN, surrounded by her family.

You didn’t need to know Polly long before you experienced her spunk. She had sharp-as-a-tack wit, pitch perfect repartee, and was ready with a comeback for any poor sucker who likely never saw it coming; she could be a spitfire when she wanted. Polly was a generous hostess and friends loved to gather for lively dinners and bridge parties at her home.

She was a talented pianist, and knitter of beautiful creations for her family and friends.  A voracious reader, Polly most often could be found surrounded by books. She made many friends as a longtime volunteer for the Indianapolis Library’s Nora Branch, still showing up for her weekly shift well into her 90s.

Polly was born in Robinson, Illinois, and grew up in Anderson, Indiana where she graduated from high school. She attended Butler University where she was managing editor of the campus paper, the Collegian. After graduation she continued her passion for journalism, eventually becoming women’s editor for the Indianapolis Star, surely a groundbreaking accomplishment for a woman of her generation.

And the paper was where she met the love of her life, Bart Grabow, then the  business editor for the Indianapolis News. When Bart died in 2005, he took a big piece of Polly’s heart with him. They are now reunited.

Polly became a full-time mother after the birth of her first son and spent her days volunteering at her three children’s activities, and keeping everyone going in (basically) the same direction. Her greatest accomplishment, she told them, was seeing them each married and happily raising families of their own.

Polly’s family includes son, Brad (Stephanie) Grabow and their son, Cooper, all of Carmel, IN; daughter, Gretchen (Brien) Joyce and their two adult children, Kasey and Keagan, of Cary, NC; and son, Chip (Nancy) Grabow and their daughter Piper, of Decatur, GA.

Gifts in lieu of flowers may be made to the Nora Library branch where she volunteered. Gifts can be made online or by sending a check payable to “Indy PL Foundation, Nora Branch” with Polly’s name on the memo line to: The Indianapolis Public Library Foundation, Post Office Box 6134, Indianapolis, IN 46206.

A private memorial service will be held in Carmel, IN.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Polly (Cochran) Grabow, please visit our flower store.


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