Neil Harris

Obituary
  • "Neil was a good friend. I'll miss him."
    - Richard George
  • "It was a pleasure and a blessing to get to know Neil during..."
    - Reece Wiley

A celebration of life service for Neil Milton Harris, 95, Lawrence, will be 2 pm, Wednesday, August 2, 2017, at Rumsey-Yost Funeral Home. Burial will follow at Memorial Park Cemetery.

Neil Milton Harris was born October 4, 1921 to George W. and Susan (McGee) Harris in Lawrence, KS.

He grew up in rural Douglas County with his siblings George Thomas, Wilna Mae, Glenn Lester (Pete), Edward Paul, Laura (Nancy), and James. His youngest brother James born in 1929 died at the age of 4.

Neil attended several rural grade schools and graduated from Liberty Memorial High School in 1941.

He attended Kansas University a short time before enlisting in the Army Airforce. He served during WW II from July 1942 to November 1945. He completed basic training in Tulsa, Oklahoma and was based in Burma during the war. He was discharged from the service with the rank of Staff Sargent.

He completed solo pilot training in October 1947 and Line pilot in February 1948.

Neil married Marion Ella Dowers October 1, 1941 in Leavenworth, Kansas. They shared over 50 years of marriage. She preceded him in death November 27, 2005.

After returning from the war he worked at Sunflower and for a contractor in Kansas City building homes.

Neil eventually started his own business building and remodeling homes in Lawrence. In 1972 he joined his son Bo as co-owner of Harris Construction Company.

When he retired Neil and Marion built a second home is Estes Park, Colorado where they enjoyed spending six months during late spring to early fall. They enjoyed friends and social outings both in Kansas and Colorado.

After the death of Marion after her battle with cancer, he adjusted by getting out with friends and family and enjoyed Thursday nights at the American Legion. He loved the big band music of the 40s and enjoyed dancing.

He is survived by his three children Claudia (Dale) Flory, Bo (Jane) Harris, Mike (Crystal) Harris;

Seven grandchildren: Lance (Jill) and Brett (Michelle) Flory, Toland (Garreth) Hippe, Jessica (Eric) Wolking, Adam Harris, Hunter (Annie) Harris, and Hannah (Zac) Towns, and 10 great grandchildren: Austin and Mason Flory, Brooke Cooper, Haley, Parker and Walker Hippe, August and Harper Wolking, Hayes and Hill Harris, sister Nancy Schaffert and nephews and nieces.

His life was well lived. He will be greatly missed by all who knew and loved him.

Online condolences made at rumsey-yost.com.

Memorial contributions may be made to American Legion Post 14, Lawrence, in care of the funeral home, 601 Indiana St., Lawrence, KS, 66044.
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Funeral Home
Rumsey-Yost Funeral Home & Crematory
601 Indiana St
Lawrence, KS 66044
(785) 843-5111
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Published in Lawrence Journal-World from July 28 to Aug. 1, 2017
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