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Robert Harris



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Robert Harris, 87, of Bloomfield died at home on May 2.

He was born into a military family in Amarillo, Texas, on January 4, 1937. He was raised in Lubbock, Texas by parents Clyde and Sarah Harris. He graduated from Lubbock High School and Texas Tech University.

Bob received his pilot’s license during college in June 1962. After graduating from college, he joined the Army doing his flight training at Fort Rucker. He was first in his flight class, earning him the choice of airplanes, the Caribou. Bob served in Vietnam from 1964-1965 flying combat support missions in Vietnam. After discharge he became a commercial pilot with American Airlines from 1966-1997. He retired as a captain 30 years later, and went into private aviation doing contract work for Cablevision on Long Island as a corporate pilot.

He met his wife, Carol, also a pilot, at an Angel Flight picnic. They flew many Angel Flights together for people who needed medical transportation. They continued flying until 2018 when they sold their airplane.

Bob lived in Newtown for 42 years. He was a devoted father to his sons, Rob and Ryan, and his daughter, Reagan. When he was not on a trip, he was always at one of his children’s games or concerts, playing whiffle ball in the yard or basketball with the kids, helping with their paper route and generally adding fun to their days. Bob always found time to coach all of Ryan and Rob’s baseball teams every year and passed on his love of road running to Ryan and Reagan, who still run to this day.

Bob’s love of music was as great as his love of flying. While he lived in Newtown, he was a clarinetist in Danbury Symphony. He played with them for many years.

Upon moving to Southport, N.C., in 2013, he joined Wilmington Symphonic Winds ensemble, playing bass clarinet from 2015-2017. He can be seen on YouTube as the guy in the third row with the shiny head.

Bob and Carol moved back to Connecticut in 2018, residing at McLean in their independent living facility. In 2020 they moved to Bloomfield. Bob and Carol spent many years at their vacation home in Surry, Maine, near Bar Harbor. At some future time, his ashes will be scattered atop Cadillac Mountain in Acadia National Park.

Bob is survived by his wife, Carol; his son, Ryan (Leanne) Harris of Long Valley, N.J.; his daughter, Reagan (Kyle) Fitzgibbons of Portland, Conn.; and grandchildren Michael, Kaitlyn, Tara, Paige, Colin and Sean.

He was predeceased by his son Rob.

A memorial service will be held in Newtown on Sunday, June 9, 2-5 pm, at Honan Funeral Home, 58 Main Street. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Angel Flight NE (angelflightne.org, click on the Donate button).

Robert Harris
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