John Michael Harris passed away peacefully on Jan. 8, 2018, at Providence Hood River Memorial Hospital, due to complications associated with his fight against Lymphoma and Leukemia. John's family would like to express their sincere appreciation to Providence Hood River Memorial Hospital and all staff members involved in the care of their father.
John passed away at the age of 73. He was born to Joseph and Edith Harris on Jan. 26, 1944, in Fort Wayne, Ind. John spent most of his life as an iron worker, working in ship yards, refineries, and manufacturing and starting gates, ultimately going into business for himself in the early 1990s. As founder of Harris Gate Company Inc., John completed a multitude of projects throughout the northwest, which included commercial, residential, and his true calling, ornamental rod iron. Though John was widely known for his iron work, at heart he was an artist with the soul of a sailor. John spent the last decade of his life on the water as much as possible, learning to windsurf with some of the best, as well as perfecting his elegant pencil drawings.
John had a passion for windsurfing, going wherever the wind blew the best, taking him all over, but always back to his favorite spot, La Ventana, Mexico.
Two celebrations of life will be held for John later in the year. One in the Skagit Valley, Wash., area, where John spent the majority of his life, and another in Hood River, among the windsurfing community that became a close extended family to him.
John is survived by his five children, David Harris, Don Heinrichs, JoDee Morales, Jaime Todd, and Shawn Harris, and eight grandchildren. Though they will miss his free spirit, spontaneous adventures and wild tales, they know they will meet together at the water in the very near future.
Arrangements are under the direction of Anderson's Tribute Center (Funerals • Receptions • Cremations), 1401 Belmont Ave., Hood River. Visit www.AndersonsTributeCenter.com to leave a note of condolence for the family.
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