Grace Dunphy was the mother of Phil Dunphy and the wife of Frank Dunphy, as well the mother-in-law of Claire Dunphy and the paternal grandmother of Haley, Alex, and Luke Dunphy. She never appeared on the show, neither in person, nor in flashbacks or photos but has been mentioned in several episodes.
In "Fizbo", Phil reveals that he is afraid of clowns. He is not sure where the fear comes from, but according to Grace, it's because when Phil was a kid he found a dead clown in the woods.
In "Undeck the Halls", the Dunphy family video chat with Frank and Phil asks him where's Grace. Franks says that she's in the bathtub. Later, when Frank sees the Dunphys arguing, he tells her wife to come to view it.
In "Travels with Scout", Frank returns from Cocoa Beach to give the Dunphy family Scout, a dog he can't raise as Grace is allergic to dogs. Claire sees Frank crying and thinks that has something to do with Grace. But Frank says that he was apparently sad because he is giving up Scout, and the family decides to let Frank keep the dog.
In "Schooled", Phil says that Grace and Frank bought him a bicycle helmet.
In "The Wow Factor", Frank says that Grace is a little tired of hearing how pretty Claire is.
Grace dies in "Goodnight Gracie", and the whole family flies to Florida for the funeral. Phil and Claire read the letter Grace wrote about the last thing she would want Phil to do for her. That last thing is to set up Frank with a woman called Annie Fitzsimmons, so he will not be alone. Phil does not like the idea at all, but Claire says that he has to honor his mother's wish, especially since it is her last one. When they go to Annie's house, they see a man and mistake him for her boyfriend. But when they realize that he is actually her brother, Phil returns to Annie's house and finally explains her his mother's last wish because it's what Grace wanted. Phil then remembers all that Grace did for him and realizes that she was a great woman. He breaks down crying and Annie comforts him.
In "The Help", it is revealed that after Grace passed away, Frank finally dated Annie and she broke up with him. Then he seemed kind of down, so Phil invited him to stay at the house of the Dunphys. However, Frank later admits that was him who broke up with Annie, because he was still saddened by the loss of his wife.
In "Australia", the entire family travels to Australia where Phil was conceived and he wants to connect to his late mother by visiting the country. But he thinks that Australia doesn't like him when gets stung by jellyfish, bitten by mosquitoes, and punched in the face by a kangaroo. He is approached by an Australian man stating that after you get hurt in Australia by the wildlife, you become one of them. Phil is later accepting of this, but turns around to see that the Australian man is gone.
- Grace had a grandfather who was Australian.