Maynard Harold Harris

Maynard Harold Harris, age 86 of Raisin Township, Lenawee County, Mich., passed away Thursday, Dec. 31, 2015, at the Evangelical Home in Saline. He was born on August 2, 1929 in Detroit, Mich., to Harold and Emma (Kenkel) Harris.

Maynard attended Thomas M. Cooley High School in Detroit, Mich., and graduated in June 1947. He served on active duty in the United States Air Force during the Cold War from 1948 to 1949 and in the U.S.A.F. Reserves from 1949 to 1955.

Maynard attended Michigan State Normal College — now Eastern Michigan University — in Ypsilanti, Mich., from 1949 to 1953 where he graduated with a B.S. Degree in Elementary Education. He was a member of Kappa Phi Alpha fraternity. In 1959, Maynard graduated from Eastern Michigan University with a M.A. Degree in Elementary Administration and Supervision. He taught elementary education in all subjects in the Farmington, Mich., public school system from 1954 to 1966, including one of the first special education classes started in Michigan from 1959 to 1960. Maynard then taught at Greenfield Village Schools — Henry Ford’s private school system in Dearborn, Mich., — from 1966 to 1969. From 1969 to 1990, he taught elementary education in the Riverview, Mich., public school system until his retirement in 1990.

Maynard married Yvonne E. (Sue) Smith on August 20, 1966 at Greenfield-Peace Lutheran Church in Detroit, Mich., officiated by Rev. Paul Foust.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Sue, after nearly 43 years of marriage, in 2009.

He is survived by three children, Christine, David (Molly) and Stephen Harris; also four grandchildren, Haley Frederick, Grace, Sarah and Rachel Harris; a sister, Lynn Riemer of Ludington, Mich., and four of her children, Dr. Randy Riemer, Dr. Andy Riemer, Wendy Williams and Julie Lenzo.

Maynard served as Board of Christian Education member at Greenfield-Peace Lutheran Church in Detroit, Mich., from 1965 to 1971 and at Hope Lutheran Church in Adrian, Mich., as Director of Christian Education from 1975 to 1977. He also served as an Elder at Hope Lutheran Church in the 1980’s.

Maynard served as President of the Eastern Michigan University Huron Restoration Alumni Chapter — one of the largest alumni chapters on campus from 2001 to 2015.         

Maynard was also a life member of the Yankee Air Force Museum at Willow Run, Mich., that preserves, restores and flies WWII warbirds for today’s generation to admire and learn about America’s great past history and heritage. He was also a member of the Amvets Post No. 1957 in Adrian, Mich., from 1996 to 2015.

Maynard had been a salesman, painter, private tutor and a security guard. His hobbies included travel, photography, airplanes and stamp collecting.

As a Historian and Educator, Maynard enjoyed giving audio-visual presentations on WWII heroes and events that produced our country’s Greatest Generation in American history. He believed that if we do not remember our country’s past history and accomplishments, then we really have no future as a nation. We stand on the shoulders of past generations. If we do not know where we have been as a country, we really cannot know where we are going as a nation. Those who do not remember our country’s great past are doomed to repeat our mistakes again in the future.

Maynard believed strongly in his Christian faith as expressed in John 3:16 — “For God so loved the world (you), that he gave His only begotten Son (Jesus), that whoever (you) believes in Him (Jesus) should not perish, but have everlasting Life (in Heaven).” His hope was always in making others happy and friendly. “A merry heart doeth good like medicine,” the Bible tells us.

As a father and educator, Maynard always tried to impress on his children and students that the personal 3Rs of Responsibility, Reliability and Respect are privileges and not burdens in life’s journey. Maynard will always be remembered as a caring husband, father, grandfather, and educator. His ready smile and friendly handshake will always be his trademark in life, as well as his Christian faith.

Visitation was on Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2016, from 2 to 4 and 6 to 8 p.m. at Wagley Funeral Home on West Maumee Street in Adrian, Mich. Services were at Hope Lutheran Church on West US 223 in Adrian, Mich., on Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2016 at 11 a.m. with Pastor Paul Herter officiating. Burial was at Lenawee Hills Memorial Park.  A military Honor Guard of Amvets Post No. 1957 and VFW Annis Fint Post No. 1584 conduct military honors.

Contributions may be made in lieu of flowers to Children’s Hospital of Michigan, 3901 Beaubien Street, Detroit, MI  48200 and/or to Lenawee Medical Care Facility, 200 Sand Creek Hwy., Adrian, MI 49221. 

Online condolences and memories are welcomed at www.wagleyfuneralhomes.com.

“God Bless America”

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