He was born Jan. 15, 1924, in Magna, Utah, to Roy Elmore Harris and Martha Vilate Deland, the fourth of nine children. Tom’s family moved to Mesa, Ariz. in 1927.
Tom enlisted as a Marine in 1942 and served his country in WWII as a tail-gunner in a dive bomb squadron. He and his childhood sweetheart, Beverly Blackburn, were married on March 16, 1943, in the Arizona LDS Temple, just days before he departed for the South Pacific.
In Mesa, he built a thriving construction business, served as an LDS bishop for many years, participated as a city councilman, and all seven of Beverly’s and his children were born: Anna, Tom Jr., Dan, Jim, Bev, Chuck, and Becky.
Tom and Beverly moved their family to Parowan, Utah, in 1965, following Tom’s lifelong dream to become a farmer. In Parowan, Tom also served as an LDS high councilman and on the city council. Their only time away from Parowan was when they served a three year LDS building mission in England.
Following Beverly’s passing in 1998, Tom married Carol Henderson, then later Nadine Davis, both of whom preceded him in death.
Parowan has been his home for the past 51 years, and most people in town could tell you a story of some way Tom Harris has positively touched their lives. Tom loved the Boy Scout program and has been a leader and teacher to countless young men. His devotion to God, family, and country was unmatched. His greatest possession was his testimony of the Savior, Jesus Christ. Handing out silver dollars to everyone in town has long been his signature gesture, his way of making sure people knew they were loved.
Tom is survived by his children: Tom (Linda) Harris, Jim (Gail) Harris, Bev Slaughenhaupt, Chuck (Dianna) Harris, Becky (Stewart) Gower; daughter-in-law Andrea (Bob) Augenstein; 44 grandchildren; 100 plus great-grandchildren and sisters Ann (Ben) McKernan and Pat (Richard) Barrett.
He is preceded in death by his wife Beverly Ann Blackburn; daughter Anna Charee Mecham (Frank Mecham); son Daniel William Harris; grandson Jimmy Harris; granddaughter Heidi Stephensen; grandson Benjy Mecham; and great-grandson Tyler Stephensen.
Funeral services will be Saturday, March 12 at 11 a.m. in the West Ward building, Center Street and 100 West, in Parowan, Utah. A viewing will be Friday night, March 11 from 6 to 8 p.m., Parowan West Ward building, and Saturday from 9 to 10 a.m. in the West Ward building. Interment will be at the Parowan Cemetery.