In Memory

Ronald Cleo Harris

Ronald Cleo Harris


GREENSBORO — Ronald C. Harris, 68, born March 28, 1944, died on March 15, 2013, from complications of pneumonia after a long battle with polymyositis.

A funeral service will be held at 2 p.m. on Wednesday March 20 at Muir's Chapel Methodist Church on Muir's Chapel Road in Greensboro.

Ron grew up in Greensboro, NC, graduated from Greensboro (Grimsley) High School, and attended Guilford College. Ron thrived in a dynamic career with Mattel Toys working in Chicago, Dallas, and Atlanta. On behalf of Mattel, Ron portrayed Major Matt Mason, landing in a helicopter in Ft. Lauderdale, FL to promote the U.S. Space Program. After Mattel, Ron established his own sales firm representing a variety of toy companies across the country. Later Ron became Manager of Environmental Services at Kennestone Hospital in Marietta, Georgia, where he created and implemented an early, successful recycling program, which was honored in the annual "Keep America Beautiful" competition in 1995. Ron was a great friend to older people, participating in a Sunday School class for seniors before he was one. He was also uncle, grandfather, and godfather to many family and adopted children. Ron was a student of Philosophy, including studies of world religions. He was an avid environmentalist and entrepreneur, and loved working outdoors. He promoted the survival of bluebirds, creating a web site advocating the building and placement of bluebird houses across the South. Ron lived and traveled all across the country, but he was a Greensboro boy at heart. He loved Stamey's BBQ, Neese's Liver Pudding, the Boar and Castle, and Ham's Restaurant. Ron was passionate about many things, and larger than life in many ways. He was broad-shouldered, handsome, charming, and fiercely loyal, opinionated, and engaging. Ron is predeceased by his parents, Cleo and Helen Harris, and his infant daughter Kimberly Rae Harris.

He is survived by his wife and best friend of 49 years, Cheryl Jones Harris, his son Lawrence Craig Harris, his adopted son James Henley, granddaughter Amaia Henley, and his dog Cowboy, all of Marietta, Georgia. Other survivors include his second mother Henrietta Hester Harris, his brothers Brian Harris and Tom Hester (wife Carter Worthy), his sisters Susan Hester (partner Sandy Douglass) and Elizabeth DeBlasio (husband Joseph DeBlasio), his father-in-law Jim Jones, brother-in-law Mike Jones, and nieces and nephews.

The family will receive visitors on Tuesday March 19 from 6 p.m. until 8 p.m. at Forbis & Dick Guilford Chapel, 5926 W. Friendly Avenue, Greensboro.

In lieu of flowers please make a gift to your favorite charity in memory of Ron.

Online condolences may be made to

Published in News Record on March 17, 2013