Obituary for Harold Richard Harris
“Old Soldiers Never Die, They Simply Fade Away”
Ret. Lt. Col. Harold Richard Harris passed into the hands of His Lord and Savior Jesus Christ at 1745 hours, February 3, 2018, at the age of 87 in Arlington, Texas, to accept his next assignment in Heaven. Visitation will be held at Wade Funeral Home at 4140 West Pioneer Parkway in Arlington, Texas, on Monday, February 12, 2018, at 9:00am, followed by the service at 11:00am officiated by Pastor Jimmy McNeil. Following the service, the Texas Patriot Honor Guard will lead a processional escort to the Dallas Fort Worth National Cemetery at 2000 Mountain Creek Parkway in Dallas, Texas, for interment with full Military Honors.
Richard is survived by his former wife and the mother of his children, Arlene Ruth Tolpo Harris of Wade, NC; two sons, Michael Norman Harris and wife, Gretchen Fricke Harris, of Baton Rouge, LA, and Steven Wayne Harris and wife, Julia Christine Galston Harris, of Falcon, NC; and a daughter, Linda Leigh Harris Mayakis and husband, Alexander Mayakis, of Raleigh,NC; 6 grandchildren, Jennifer Leigh Harris Guerin and husband, Matthew Kearney Guerin, Ryan Boyd Harris and wife, Lauren Mary Elkins Harris, James Steven Harris, Abigail "Abby" Marie Harris, Michelle Lynn Mayakis, and Nicole Ruth Mayakis; 4 great-grandchildren Megan Elise Guerin, Mattie Leigh Guerin, Emma Lynn Guerin, and William Dudley Harris. He is also survived by a sister, Doris Ann Harris Clark of Fort Worth, TX, and a brother, Jack Wayne Harris of Moore,SC; and several nieces and nephews. Predeceasing Richard was Gayna Dodds, his travel companion and dancing partner, fondly remembered for encouraging his best self.
Richard was born July 22, 1930, to parents, Harold Boyd Harris and Addie Parker Harris, in Fort Worth, Texas. As a 7th grader, Richard donned his first Army uniform and found his love for service with the ROTC through high school at Amon Carter in Fort Worth. He pursued this service at Virginia Polytechnic Institute where he received his commission as a 2nd LT and continued his loyal service in the US Army until his retirement in 1974.
Assigned to the 82nd Airborne Division, he proudly served his home and country with pride and honor as an “All American.” During his two Caribbean campaigns and multiple tours in Vietnam, he earned many citations such as The Bronze Star, Legion of Merit, Army Commendation Medal, and others as a Master Parachutist with a Ranger Tab.
Richard received a geology degree from Campbell College and enjoyed geology as a hobby in his retirement. In his later years, Richard fulfilled his gardening passion by tilling his church’s garden for the needy and sharing his homegrown peaches, pears and broccoli. He was enthusiastic about being a “Popsie” to his grandchildren, fishing with his sons and grandsons, dancing at his grandchildren’s weddings, and traveling the world with his family and friends. Richard’s last days were brightened by thoughts of his family for whom he expressed much love and pride.
His family wishes to express appreciation for all the professional caretakers at Town Hall Estates and Community Hospice and Dr. Andrew Segal for his years of dedicated care. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that friends donate to Meals on Wheels, which warmly nourished Richard’s body and soul with their kind and attentive visits, or to a charity of choice that supports the military and their families.
Wade Family Funeral Home