Howard Harris Dies - More Testimonials AddedPermalink +
Wed, Nov 12, 2014, 1:51 pm // John Servais
Posted Nov 9
Howard Harris, lifetime Friend, founder of the Whatcom Peace Vigil at the Federal Building during the Vietnam War, and first recipient of the Howard L. Harris Lifetime Peacemaker Award, died peacefully in his sleep on Thursday, Nov. 6 at home, with family members around him. He was 97. His faithful presence in worship will be deeply missed for a long time to come.
The Harris family has asked the Friends to help organize a memorial service for him. (No date yet.) Note: NWCitizen will post info when available.
Please hold Howard and his family in the Light.
Updated Nov 12.
OBITUARY - Howard Leroy Harris
Howard Leroy Harris was born on October 9, 1917 to Leroy and Leona (Miller) Harris at Hereford, Texas, where his parents and grandparents were pioneering wheat farmers in the Texas “panhandle.” When he was two years old they moved back to Iowa where he grew up on the farm that had been bought by his grandparents in 1887. He acquired degrees from the University of Iowa, the University of Missouri, and Hartford Theological Seminary. A life-long Quaker, he was a conscientious objector in world War II and peacemaking and war resistance was a theme that informed and activated his entire life. Child rearing without punishment, and education that enhances natural creativity and curiosity instead of regimented schooling, became a major concern in his life, growing out of both anthropological research and the Quaker experience of spiritual growth.
Howard met Rosemary Crist in 1943 when they were both working at the American Friends Service Committee work camp at Flanner House in Indianapolis, Indiana, and they were married there in May of that year. During the summer of 1943 they took a 600 mile honeymoon bicycle trip through Vermont, New Hampshire and Massachusetts.
Howard taught botany at Friends University in Wichita, Kansas, for three years, spent five years in the pastoral ministry in Congregational and Friends churches, and six years counseling at Whitman Junior High school in Livonia, Michigan. He taught anthropology for three years at San Fernando Valley State College (now California State University at Northridge), and in 1966 became Associate Professor of Anthropology at Western Washington State College (now Western Washington University), and continued in this position until his gradual retirement 1986-1992. He continued to teach correspondence courses in anthropology until the summer of 2014. Teaching anthropology gave him great satisfaction. He often said that he was fortunate to get paid for doing what he loved to do anyway. A life-long conservationist, hiking and backpacking, especially in mountainous terrain, was a major joy. The photo included in this obituary was taken on his 97th birthday up at Artist Point near Mt. Baker. In December of 1966 he and Rosemary, along with a friend, started the Peace Vigil in downtown Bellingham, which still continues today. In 2005 he was the first recipient of the Howard Harris Lifetime Peacemaker Award, named in his honor.
Rosemary died on January 1, 2009 and their granddaughter, Anna Rosemary, died on April 2, 2013. He is survived by his sister, Fern Glass of Tallassee, Alabama; his six children: David, Heather (Andrew) Ezrre, Holly, Timothy (Ellen) and their daughters Sophia and Emily; and Stanley (Karen) and their children Geoffrey (Jennifer), Nicholas, Althea, Thomas, Alexander and Violet, all of Bellingham; and Stephen (Margaret) of Newton, Iowa and their children Elizabeth, Katharine, Benjamin (Roslyn) and Mary (David); and seven, soon to be eight, great-grandchildren, as well as numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.
A memorial service will be held at 2:00 on Saturday, December 13 at the First Congregational Church in Bellingham. Memorial gifts may be sent to the Whatcom Peace and Justice Center, P.O. Box 2444, Bellingham, WA 98227; The American Friends Service Committee 1501 Cherry St., Philadelphia, PA 19102; or The Friends Committee on National Legislation, 245 Second St. NE, Washington, DC 20002.
You can share your memories and leave a comment - or just read the comments - at the Whatcom Cremation and Funeral website.
Also on Nov 12, we are adding these testimonials.
Barbara Z. Rofkar:
Howard Harris was always a teacher, mentor guide for behavior on how one becomes a truly authentic human being! He taught with a love for humanity no matter where one was born or the culture in which they were raised. He saw the value of all ‘souls’ to which the creator gave life and he would protect their right to exist. He did this through the respect he exhibit toward nature, children, students, adults or anyone who would engage in real discussion not just diatribe for a certain ideology. He was my professor at WWU for a number of classes which engaged us in a way that would encourage one to explore one's beliefs using the critical measurement of putting oneself into another's shoes. His intention was to allow our experiences to become the wisdom for a world we would work to create in the image of what we wanted for humanity. Competition was challenging ourselves to live what we believed. When my mind goes to who Howard was, the first thoughts are humane, gentle and a fierce believer in the potential of humanity to be a force for good toward the world and each other.
Howard's understanding of the need to listen to children colored his broader views of how a peaceful world is possible. He saw how punishing related to wider violence in society, and even to the ultimate violence of war. Never a harsh word, never a loud voice, and to his last days grateful. He walked Ptarmagin Ridge nearly into his 80s, graciously spoke to classes when invited, especially to share his learning and love of children.
I knew Howard at Western Washington University as a professor with a long and steadfast commitment to non-violence and a history of doing conscientious objection counseling. After having taken training in CO counseling myself, my more direct connection of working with him was at the start of the Iraq war in 2003 when many of the young college students feared a draft and we were meeting with lots of young men wanting to start their paperwork for CO. Then of course, I was always inspired in seeing him at the Peace Vigil in front of the Federal Building that he began during the Viet Nam war. I don't recall how many years ago this was but he was definitely up there in years (maybe 5-6 years ago), that I saw him with members of his family slowly hiking up at Artist's Point and I thought--wow--I want to be doing this at that age too. I believed he hiked a lot and loved the mountains and outdoors.
Two men who knew each other well, and were beloved and beautiful elders and teachers to the Bellingham community, have recently passed on. Tom Hall, a physician, and Howard Harris, a professor of anthropology, were both Quakers (members of the Religious Society of Friends), who believed in, and lived according to, the force of love, as did the wonderful women in their lives. Tom often expressed his indebtedness to Howard regarding the true principles of the Golden Rule, that is, not just as it is usually heard, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you,” but as, “Do unto others as they would have you do unto them.” Contemplation of this version, self-love and protection included, has the capacity to draw us more deeply into the beautiful uniqueness and needs of the other, and while receiving mutual benefit, releases us from self-interest. The power of love, which is the essence of nonviolence, these mentors taught, leads the way.
Tom would sometimes tear up when talking about the necessity of homo empathicus as the emerging human, and would inevitably go back to Howard’s own words as his source, quoting from Howard’s 2010 book, “Lifetime Peacemaker,” in which Howard devotes a whole chapter to “An Analysis of Love” based upon Greek philosophy. In the context of spouses, but in reference to all relationality, Howard says we can, in meeting each others’ needs, love others “not in spite of their weaknesses, but because of them.”
Howard believed in nonviolent parenting, and was devoted to children and all creation. He gave us an abundance of example as we go on without him and Tom, into an era of endless war and planetary destruction. Some will wonder if a thing called Love can help our needed rapid evolution, our “radical revolution of values,” as their own mentor, Martin Luther King, put it. Howard said that love is an energy we can allow to flow through us by experiencing love “as a decision, not an emotion.” Surely we cannot go far wrong, who are still here, by listening to Howard, and by making that decision.
Wed, Nov 12, 2014, 1:51 pm // John ServaisUpdated Nov 12. Howard Harris, the founder of the Bellingham silent peace vigil at the Federal Building in Bellingham, has died. He and Rosemary were leaders in our…
Tue, Nov 11, 2014, 2:34 pm // John ServaisOn this Veterans Day, a note about how vets need our government to step up - as has never been done. And a personal note on the power…
3 comments; last on Nov 13, 2014
Sun, Jun 08, 2014, 6:07 pm // Richard LewisThe poet for the Whatcom Independent back 8 years ago, has accepted our invitation to submit occasional poems to NWCitizen.
Wed, Sep 04, 2013, 9:37 am // John ServaisAn attempt at linking to one or more writers who can help us make sense of going to war with Syria. An alternative to Kerry-Obama.
Wed, Sep 04, 2013, 1:36 am // John ServaisContacting Rick Larsen and Susan Delbene is actually a viable citizen exercise just now. Tell them to vote NO on bombing Syria.
1 comments; last on Sep 04, 2013
Sat, Aug 31, 2013, 3:10 pm // John ServaisSaturday afternoon - and a rally is taking place in downtown Bellingham against bombing Syria. Riley Sweeny and his Political Junkie site cover it.
Fri, Aug 30, 2013, 12:08 pm // John ServaisGee, can we make it any clearer? Publisher opinion. So sad that we have to write this to Obama - who got our vote in 2008 because he…
4 comments; last on Aug 31, 2013
Mon, Jun 10, 2013, 1:53 pm // John ServaisEdward Snowden is a very courageous patriot, in the opinion of the publisher of NWCitizen.
3 comments; last on Jun 14, 2013
Sun, Aug 19, 2012, 11:09 pm // John ServaisWikileaks founder spoke from a safe open window to the people of the world. His words are important to the future of democracy and freedoms.
4 comments; last on Aug 21, 2012
Sun, Jul 31, 2011, 3:17 pm // Riley SweeneyRiley talks about the sobering reminder of our fallen soldiers at the Old Settler's Parade
2 comments; last on Aug 01, 2011
Wed, Feb 02, 2011, 10:22 am // John ServaisEgypt - just one citizen voicing his perspective on what is happening. Speaking freely.
4 comments; last on Feb 07, 2011
Sun, Jan 09, 2011, 12:56 pm // John ServaisSarah Palin's violence-laced rhetoric shares the blame for the Arizona massacre.
18 comments; last on Jan 12, 2011
Sat, Nov 27, 2010, 8:19 pm // John ServaisTSA puts young mother with a bag of breast milk through an illegal and unbelievable process.
5 comments; last on Nov 29, 2010
Fri, Nov 20, 2009, 11:06 am // Paul deArmondDid you every wonder what was really going on inside the racist right?
Usually caricatured by stereotypes of bed-sheeted Klansmen and goose-stepping neo-Nazis, the racist right continu
8 comments; last on Dec 05, 2009
Mon, Aug 11, 2008, 4:03 pm // John ServaisThe power of censorship and news control is on display for all who care to look around. Today, the online maps of the country of Georgia have no…
5 comments; last on Aug 13, 2008
Thu, Dec 27, 2007, 5:48 am // John Servais9 pm
Some links. Juan Cole has his first take posted regarding the killing of Bhutto. Arianna Huffington knew her well and posted a personal remeberance. CNN reports with…
Thu, Dec 06, 2007, 4:18 am // John ServaisDo we Americans believe in human rights? Do we believe that "all" are equal and have rights as our Declaration of Independence says we believe - or only…
Fri, Nov 23, 2007, 5:07 am // John Servais20,000 Iraq & Afghan veterans with brain injuries are not counted as wounded by the Pentagon. Charming. Not surprising. USA Today has the report in today's issue. Very…
Fri, Jul 13, 2007, 5:50 pm // Site ManagementThe Silver Beach Neighborhood forum went well last night with about 75 people attending. It was the first public chance for citizens to compare candidates and gauge them…
Wed, Jun 13, 2007, 8:01 pm // Site ManagementAll part of the US push for military control of the world. If you think our building 24 military forts in Africa is a good idea, then you…
Tue, Jun 12, 2007, 8:03 pm // Site ManagementArmed Service veterans are twice as likely to commit suicide as civilians. Just another intangible cost of the insane war in Iraq. (It applies to all male vets…
Sun, Jun 10, 2007, 8:12 pm // Site ManagementClose Gitmo - this afternoon, says General Colin Powell.
The Guantanamo prison in Cuba the US Military uses for torture, illegal imprisonment and secret trials is a permanent black…
Thu, Jun 07, 2007, 8:26 pm // Site ManagementEvan will complete his week-long vigil at the old Federal Building in downtown Bellingham tomorrow afternoon at 4 pm - during the normal weekly peace vigil. During his…
Sat, Jun 02, 2007, 8:41 pm // Site ManagementCheck the website about his vigil. He is demonstrating while wearing his Army uniform - and he has every constitutional right to do so. But I predict the…
Tue, May 29, 2007, 8:45 pm // Site ManagementThe generals who can't count straight are caught again. The top generals have been loose with the facts in their effort to justify the war but his interview…
Mon, May 28, 2007, 8:50 pm // Site ManagementThis writer - living in a small town in Washington State - has no ability to add value above national writers who have covered the Iraq war and…
Thu, May 24, 2007, 4:24 pm // Site ManagementRick Larsen voted for further war spending today - with no timelines. No surprise. He has been a war supporter all along. Let's start now to find a…
Tue, Apr 24, 2007, 4:20 am // Tip JohnsonAll the fuss over whether the "surge" is a credible strategy, whether or not to schedule a troop withdrawal from Iraq or continue funding the war kinda misses…
Mon, Apr 23, 2007, 4:31 pm // Tip JohnsonAccording to the Washington Post, "President Bush warned Thursday that pulling out of Iraq too soon would trigger a bloodbath akin to that of the Cambodian killing fields…
Thu, Apr 05, 2007, 5:46 pm // John ServaisThis from Juan Cole - on Tuesday. Lest we forget the trauma we are foisting on the world.
21 Shiites from McCain's Market Killed
3 US Troops Killed Massive Truck…
Thu, Mar 29, 2007, 4:09 pm // John ServaisRick Larsen's attitude towards those citizens who are against the war in Iraq is exposed. In the case against Ellen Murphy by US Rep. Rick Larsen and the…
Tue, Mar 20, 2007, 4:47 pm // John ServaisFour years ago today the ground invasion of Iraq started. George Bush used known false claims of danger to the US to justify the war. By early April…
Sun, Mar 11, 2007, 5:16 pm // Site ManagementCongressman Rick Larsen has (so far) successfully avoided the process server who is waiting to hand him a subpoena to appear in the trial of war protester Ellen…
Sun, Mar 04, 2007, 5:31 pm // Site ManagementEllen Murphy is now allowed to enter the Federal Building in Bellingham. With the court dismissal of the Oct. 20 trespass charge, the lifetime ban on entering the…
Fri, Feb 23, 2007, 5:38 pm // Site ManagementEllen Murphy's court date has been changed. Her jury trial will be on Tuesday, March 20 ( not Feb 27 as posted below last week). It was changed…
Wed, Feb 14, 2007, 5:53 pm // Tip JohnsonThe Pentagon, after weeks of delay, finally trotted out the "irrefutable evidence" that Iran is supplying deadly weapons to Iraqi "insurgents". Wow! They produced two tables of weaponry…
Tue, Jan 16, 2007, 6:46 pm // John Servais. . . welcome to the correct side of the Iraq war issue. Rick spoke yesterday at Bellingham city hall and, according to the Bellingham Herald, he switched…
Fri, Jan 12, 2007, 1:00 pm // John ServaisThe news analysts are finally realizing that Bush's speech was a declaration of war on Iran. I posted that minutes after the speech and revisited it yesterday. We…
Thu, Jan 11, 2007, 5:44 pm // John ServaisJuan Cole provides an excellent if longish read on Bush's new plan for the Iraq war. In particular he points out how many of the infiltrators and weapons…
Wed, Jan 10, 2007, 5:49 pm // John ServaisIn his speech tonight, Bush gave no specific time lines for expected results. The first words from news commentators referred to six months for results. But Bush can…
Tue, Jan 09, 2007, 3:56 am // John ServaisFreaky. There are reports - rumors? - that Israeli Air Force pilots are training for a bombing run into Iran. If Israel drops nuclear bombs on Iran then…
Sun, Jan 07, 2007, 6:03 pm // John ServaisWhy should the execution of Saddam be a concern to all of us? Because it was a lynching - and Bush and company participated. Personally I think Bush…
Mon, Jan 01, 2007, 6:10 pm // John Servais3,000 service persons killed in Iraq? Oh we are beyond that - up to 3,002 this morning - and could climb past 4,000 this year if we 'stay…
Sun, Dec 31, 2006, 3:26 pm // John ServaisAs the 3,000th US service person is killed in Iraq today or tomorrow, the Whatcom Peace and Justice Center will hold a candlelight vigil at the Maritime Heritage…
Fri, Dec 29, 2006, 3:29 pm // John ServaisThe US - the Bush administration - had Saddam Hussein executed this evening. How sad - how stupid on several levels - and how oh so immoral. There…
Wed, Dec 06, 2006, 4:01 pm // John ServaisA good historic moment is upon us today. The Iraq Study Group Report was presented this morning to our nation's leaders and to us citizens. I think this…
Sun, Nov 19, 2006, 4:14 pm // Tip JohnsonWhile we're being proud to be Americans, don't forget that George Bush just pushed through legislation that makes it legal for our boys at Abu Ghraib to have…
Sun, Nov 19, 2006, 5:03 am // Tip JohnsonZetta Bracher, President of the local Democratic Women's Club, has an idea for getting consensus on our "new direction" in Iraq.
When it became apparent that there were no…
Thu, Nov 16, 2006, 4:19 pm // Tip JohnsonThe war in Iraq is widely regarded to have been the "hot button" issue of the last election. I don't buy it. Americans seem to like a good…
Thu, Nov 09, 2006, 4:29 pm // Tip JohnsonCongratulations, Americans. That was certainly worth voting for! Voters thoroughly routing the entrenched Neo-Con administration will help restore our world image, so badly damaged since re-electing t
Sat, Nov 04, 2006, 4:50 pm // Tip JohnsonHeading into the last days of this election season, George Bush and his Neo-Con Republicans have been strumming a familiar tune to promote their candidates. Republicans, they say,…
Fri, Oct 27, 2006, 5:30 pm // John ServaisThe Pentagon is blocking liberal websites, such as Wonkette, from our military in Iraq. Blatant censorship and violation of free speech and press - don't let the soldiers…
Thu, Oct 26, 2006, 5:33 pm // John ServaisWe will have sent over 100 young Americans to their deaths in Iraq in October. The highest in almost two years. And the 4th month of increasing deaths.…
Wed, Oct 25, 2006, 5:42 pm // John ServaisWhy we need to vote for Rick Larsen and win a Democratic Party majority in the House of Representatives is illustrated in this new TV ad for Democrats.…
Mon, Oct 23, 2006, 5:45 pm // John ServaisWant to do something to end the war in Iraq? Then vote for Rick Larsen. And Maria Cantwell. Rick's seat is not secure. If even a small percent…
Sun, Oct 22, 2006, 5:49 pm // John ServaisGentle reader - if you are liberal and against the war, then please please vote for Rick Larsen. Hold your nose, but vote for him. And, a bit…
Sat, Oct 21, 2006, 8:00 pm // John ServaisWe started to see it yesterday and by next weekend it will be well known. Bush is setting a timetable for pullout from Iraq - and the "October"…
Mon, Oct 16, 2006, 6:02 pm // Site ManagementActually, International - but not local and that is the point. AlJazeera reports on a scholarly Islamic letter to the Pope - pointing out the factual errors in…
Thu, Sep 28, 2006, 7:24 pm // Site ManagementThe "Terrorist Detainee" bill passed the US House of Representatives by 253 to 168 vote yesterday. Aka the Military Commissions Act of 2006. House Resolution 6166, passed on…
Sat, Sep 16, 2006, 7:41 pm // Site ManagementBush wants to continue torturing captives. Why are we even discussing this? The Nazis and Soviet Russia tortured people to get information - not the USA. Now here…
Election InfoCounty election results
State election results
Coal, Oil & Trains
Community Wise Bellingham
Powder River Basin R. C.
Local Blogs & NewsBellingham Herald
Bham Herald Politics Blog
Bham Politics & Economics
Friends of Whatcom
Get Whatcom Planning
League of Women Voters
Western Front - WWU
Local CausesChuckanut Community Forest
City Club of Bellingham
Futurewise - Whatcom
Lummi Island Quarry
N. Cascades Audubon
NW Holocaust Center
Reduce Jet Noise
Salish Sea Org.
Save the Granary Building
WA Conservation Voters
Whatcom Peace & Justice
Port of Bellingham
State election results
US - The White House
WA State Access
WA State Elections
WA State Legislature
Weather & ClimateCliff Mass Weather Blog
Nat Hurricane Center
Two day forecast
Watts Up With That? - climate
Edge of Sports
Famous Internet Skiers
Good Web SitesAl-Jazeera online
Foreign Policy in Focus
Innocence Project, The
Intrnational Herald Tribune
Julia Ioffe/New Republic
Middle East Times
New American Century
Paul Krugman - economics
Personal bio info
Portland Indy Media
Project Vote Smart
Stand for the Troops
Talking Points Memo
The Crisis Papers
War and Piece
NwCitizen 1995 - 2007Early Northwest Citizen
Quiet, Offline or DeadBellingham Police Activity
Citizens of Bellingham
Cordata & Meridian
Facebook Port Reform
N. Sound Conservancy
No Leaky Buckets
Protect Bellingham Parks
The American Telegraph