Patricia Ann Allen Harris was born on February 2, 1930 to Leslie and Marguerite Allen in Terre Haute, Indiana. She was the oldest of two children, raised in the country area of Lost Creek, Vigo County, Indiana, and then moved to Terre Haute proper in high school.
Patricia graduated from Garfield High School and attended Indiana State Teacher’s College, now Indiana State University. She moved to Indianapolis, where she attended Indiana University Nursing Training School and earned a certificate.
In Indianapolis, she met a handsome young man, Willie “Bill” Harris, and accepted his invitation in marriage. They soon moved to Columbus, Ohio. Seeking more opportunities and a better life for themselves and their young children—Donna, Wil, Connie, Terri, and Eric (Ricky), they relocated to Los Angeles, California.
In California, Patricia’s walk with Christ grew tremendously and her consistent dedication to her family became exemplary for all those who encountered her. She served the Lord by taking care of her family and assisting in kingdom building.
Patricia was a dedicated and committed wife and a loving mother, who had a no-nonsense approach that softened with each child. Her younger two children, born after her arrival to California, Agaetha “Gae” and Rodney were recipients of that softened approach.
She was a master chef and baker with specialties in fried chicken and peach cobbler.
Patricia worked with sincerity and honor for more than 20 years at the Long Beach Veterans Administration, the Veterans Administration in Los Angeles (on Wilshire), and the Social Security Offices in both Los Angeles and Compton.
These jobs allowed her to provide for her family, and upon retirement, she became a full-time caregiver for her husband and two of her grandchildren, Robert and Ryanne.
For more than 50 years, Patricia served as an example in life and leadership in various organizations, including Zion Baptist Evangelistic Church (Compton), Greater Mt. Hermon Missionary Baptist Church (Los Angeles), First Christian Church of Compton, and Marriage Encounter.
Through these avenues, Patricia touched the lives of many and with her loving approach and led many to salvation through Christ.
In her early retirement, she was a member of the 24-Hour Gym, the Line Dancing Class, the Red Hat Society and Bible Study Fellowship (BSF).
Within the last few years, she served as an Ambassador at The Grove Cerritos, Retirement Community, where she helped new residents adjust to living in that setting.
She was an active member of the Bridge Builders of Crossword Christian Church (Moreno Valley) and attended Amos Temple CME Church (Riverside).
She was proceeded in death by her parents, her husband, Willie “Bill” Harris and her youngest daughter, Agaetha “Gae” Harris.
Patricia will be greatly missed by her children: Donna Russell Ward (Sam) of Riverside; Wil Harris of Rosarita, Mexico; Connie Baxter (Chuckie) of Columbus, Ohio; Terri Thomas of Compton; Eric Harris of Phoenix, Arizona; Rodney Harris (Aloa) of Little Elm, Texas; many grandchildren, great grandchildren and great-great grandchildren.
She leaves to cherish her memories, her brother Wilbur “Spike” Allen (Essie) of Compton, her close friends Olevia Weary of Compton and Mickey Teamer of Los Angeles, nieces, nephews, many friends, and loved ones.
Patricia wanted everyone to know, “The most important decision you can ever make is the decision to give God your life and allow Him to lead you. Seek His will in everything and then pray for the strength and courage to do what He leads you to do.”
She finished her race well and can now rest and rejoice with Jesus and her loved ones in glory!
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