July 27, 1940 – September 7, 2022
“It isn’t the date on either end that counts, but how they used their dash. For that dash between the dates represents all the time they spent alive on Earth and now only those who loved them know what the little line is worth.” -Unknown
Don Harris, aged 82 years, of Edmond, Oklahoma, returned home to our Heavenly Father on September 7, 2022.
Don was born July 27, 1940 in Little Rock, Arkansas, to Robert and Bonnie Harris. He was retired from his auto collision repair business since 2015. Don had five children. The three oldest with his former wife, Charlotte, and the two youngest with his wife of almost 44 years, Donna. Don leaves behind his children with whom he took great pride: Melinda (Joe) McCarter, Jim (Shelly) Harris, Suzanne Strain, Larry Harris and Lori Harris.
Don is survived by his loving wife, Donna, an administrative assistant. They were married December 29, 1978, and together they raised two children, Larry and Lori, and then three grandchildren, Erin, Josh, and Hannah. Don was extremely fond of all his grandchildren: Jana (Justin) Duarte-Shepardson, Amy (Jake) Hill, Justin (Tanya) McCarter, Carly McCarter, Kaitlyn Strain, Erin, Josh, and Hannah Harris, Dylan and Krysten Harris, and his four great-grandchildren: Jessenia Duarte, Colby and Colton Hill, and Trever McCarter.
While living in Edmond for many years Don taught Erin, Josh, and Hannah how to drive cars, battery operated cars, 4 wheelers, and shoot a BB gun. He took great pride in all his grandchildren graduating from High School, and, Erin graduating from the University of Central Oklahoma. His nieces and nephews fondly remember how great he was at teaching them, his kids, and their friends how to water ski. Some of his best memories were with his loving wife, Donna, on Lake Texoma, over the years.
Some of Don’s favorite things were attending classic car shows with his family, elk and deer hunting and vacationing in Colorado, Harley-Davidson motorcycles, and OSU. His love and passion for classic cars transitioned into having his own auto collision repair shop called, “Don’s Body Shop” which was a point of pride. He was always the family’s car aficionado because he knew everything there was to know about cars and was always willing to give advice and help. He excelled at rebuilding and restoring 1956 Ford F-100 pickup trucks and owned many over the years ranging in color from green, green with flake, and maroon. He loved to take his well-known ’56 Ford Lamborghini Yellow with gold pearl masterpiece, lovingly tagged “Flashe1,” to car shows which won multiple awards and was also featured in Custom Classic Truck magazine. One of his regrets was not keeping some of his favorite vehicles: a 1940 Ford coupe, ’55 and ’56 Chevy Nomads, green big window ’56 Ford F-100 pickup, and his 1967 black Ford Bronco.
Other additional favorites included old nostalgic Western TV shows and movies which most likely bloomed when he helped in constructing movie sets in Old Tucson. Don was a Pepsi lover, Hostess Twinkies connoisseur, sausage McMuffin fan, and avid Braum’s customer, which he fondly called, “the ice cream store.” One of his favorite places to be in his home was his man cave.
Don had been a fireman in Wellington, Kansas, in the mid-1960’s. He was at the fire station long before most Americans got out of bed. Later, he was a volunteer fireman when the family lived in Crescent, OK. Prior to owning his own body shop he was bodyshop manager at Ron Steven’s Ford in Edmond where he met Donna in 1978. In 1985 he was body shop manager at Reynolds Ford in Norman and then Dealers Auto Auction OKC for several years. Don took fashion cues from no one because his signature look was a hot rod T-shirt designed by any car show, a faded pair of blue jeans, and a pair of old school boat shoes.
Some life-long friendships that seemed more like family were with Dennis Reeves for 70 years and Grover Murphy for 45 years.
Don is preceded in death by his parents Robert and Bonnie Harris. He dearly loved his mom. His siblings Sue, Annette, Brenda, and Alton, former wife Charlotte, and great-granddaughter Brooklyn Jayde.
His family will hold a “Celebration of Life” on Saturday, September 17, 2022 from 2-6 p.m. Casually come and go as you please at 1725 Still Water Lane, Edmond, Oklahoma.