Born North Carolina USA, November 7 1918.
William Franklin Graham Jr. better known as Billy Graham is a preacher followed by millions. His father, William Franklin Sr., was a successful farmer and businessman, Billy had a normal childhood and was baptised at Chalmers Memorial Church 1919. In 1934, a controversial evangelist, Mordecai Fowler Ham, began preaching in Carolina. He stirred up feelings with charges of moral laxity at the local school, where Graham attended the meetings, attracted by the controversy.
In autumn 1936, Graham began attending Bob Jones College in Cleveland, Tennessee. He left months later as he found it hard to adjust to campus life, so transferred to Florida Bible Institute in 1937. Graham graduated in 1940 with a BTh, while at the institute he believed that he should be baptised as an adult where Rev. John Minder, presided the sacrament. Later that year Graham started preaching, at first he started on street corners and at local small churches. He was again baptised by Rev. Cecil Underwood in Silver Lake, Florida, 1928.
During his stay in Florida he received praise for his preaching ability and soon attended Wheaton College. He Graduated in 1943 and received more preaching engagements.
It was at Wheaton where he met his future wife Ruth Bell, who had been in a missionary in China since 1916. They were married in August 1943 after they both graduated. He moved on to Chicago where he took over from Torrey Johnson on the radio program "Songs in the Night". He worked every Sunday on the radio where he was soon joined by George Beverley Shea, a popular Christian soloist. After a few short months he again moved on, this time to become the Vice President of Youth for Christ. YFC were well known for their Christian rallies being held across the country.
Torrey Johnson organized the Chicago meetings and was soon asking Graham to speak at them. He was soon hired as Johnson's helper and travelled across the USA, Canada and Europe speaking at rallies. After time Graham began holding rallies on his own and soon his work for the YFC slowed down. In 1948 he resigned from the YFC but remained an active friend to serve on the board of directors for short period.
In 1949 Graham was thrown into the national attention as a campaign he was leading resulted in the dramatic conversion of a local underworld figure. The campaign went on for an extra 5 weeks than planned. Graham went to Boston for a series of campaigns and again the results surprised Graham. There were soon articles about Graham in several newspapers including Time and Life Magazine.
The next decade brought hundreds of campaigns in major U.S. cities as well as across several parts of the world. He soon became a symbol in many people's minds for religion.
Graham's fame continued to increase but so did criticism. Many felt that Graham was using his rallies to make money for him self rather than for evangelism as a whole. Graham and his wife and friends rubbished these claims and soon incorporated the Billy Graham Evangelistic association. Graham soon began his weekly radio program "The Hour of Decision".
Graham's fame and rallies soon moved across the world to places such as Sydney, Hong Kong cities across Europe
The Heart of Graham's work remained to be the evangelistic meetings. Graham continued to hold rallies and meetings across the U.S.A. and the world.
Graham soon became a national symbol of the countries beliefs and became the leader of several institutes and organisations.
Since 1945, Graham and his wife live in Montreat, North Carolina. The couple had five children and in 1992 it was announced that Graham had Parkinson's disease and would be attending only some of the planned busy schedule for that year. In May 1996 Billy and his wife Ruth received the Congressional Medal in Washington DC.
To this day Graham has continued to attend crusades and rallies all over the world.