Milo C. Harris
February 8, 1926
- January 18, 2017
Milo Charles Harris, age 90, formerly of Salem, OR, died peacefully January 18, 2017, in Eugene, of complications following a brief illness.
Born February 8, 1926 in Lushton, Nebraska, Milo was the second of three children of Roy Harold and Ethel Marie Pay Harris. He grew up in eastern Nebraska during the Depression and World War II. He graduated from Waverly High in 1943. After moving with his family to Kennewick, WA in late 1943, he worked in a lumber yard. In February 1944, he enlisted in the Navy and left home for training on his 18th birthday. He served on the newly built USS Crosley, sailed from Philadelphia to the Philippines, transported and landed troops on beaches of Okinawa, and saw naval warfare in the Battle of Okinawa.
While awaiting discharge from the Navy, Milo was stationed at Treasure Island in San Francisco. On New Year’s Eve in 1945, he met Ethel Rae Malech at a dance at the Mt. Zion Hospital School of Nursing. They married on June 30, 1946 and celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary last June. Milo and Ethel Rae raised three children, Mary Beth, Dave, and Steve.
Following a honeymoon in Portland, they moved to Walla Walla, WA, to attend Whitman College where Milo earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration. After graduation, employment opportunities and family beckoned and they returned to the Bay Area, settling in San Jose. Milo managed an ice cream fountain there and held other positions at Carnation, while raising a young family and earning an MBA at San Jose State. In 1959, Carnation offered a transfer to Portland, Oregon, and in 1961 they settled in Salem.
In Salem, Milo held management positions with Carnation, and later the State of Oregon, serving under Governors Mark Hatfield and Tom McCall. He also served as Vice President for Planning and Finance at Willamette University. In later years, he was a self-employed tax and business consultant, retiring in 1987. He was an active member of First United Methodist Church and Salem Rotary Club.
Over the years, Milo and Ethel Rae enjoyed time at their Neskowin beach house, entertaining family and friends, barbequing salmon, making milkshakes, cooking chili for New Year’s Day, and watching Nebraska football games. Milo also enjoyed camping, traveling, and outdoor living.
Survivors include his wife, Ethel Rae, and children: Mary Beth Jacobson Kraig of Eugene; Dave Harris Lorna of Salem; and Steve Harris Mollie of Portland; and seven grandchildren. Milo was preceded in death by his brother, Harold, and sister, Mariellen.
A memorial service will be held at First United Methodist Church Salem OR at 1 pm Saturday March 11, 2017.
Contributions may be made to First United Methodist Church Salem or Nestucca Valley Presbyterian Church Pacific City.
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