PEORIA Ill. (WMBD) — Friday afternoon, friends, family and old students spoke at Manual High School sharing the impact one retiring teacher had on them.

George Graves Jr. served as band director for Manual high school from 1977 until 2008.

The street named in his honor is located at Ann and Griswald. It was picked because it runs along Russel field–only a few yards from Manual’s band wing.

Graves was surprised this morning with the recognition and said he’s absolutely elated.

“It feels really great. I was overwhelmed. I still am. I can’t believe this has happened to me. But it is. I’m glad to accept the honor,” said Graves.

Manual high school’s auditorium, band room and music offices have all been renamed the George Graves Jr. School of Cultural Arts in honor of him.