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Mary Louise Harris

1933 - 2015

May 26, 1933 in Buffalo, N.Y. born to Elliott and Janie Gladden was Mary Louise Gladden. She left us on March 6, 2015. Raised in a loving God filled home, she met and married Joseph Harris, in 1950. Bell Aircraft transferred them to Denver, CO in 1957. A 1960 transfer to VAFB followed, Guadalupe their home. With 6 children they taught by example and began support of education as PTA members. Following J.C.’s death in 1968 Mary continued. Graduating from Hancock College summa cum laude, and bilingual, she worked as a teacher’s aide for Guadalupe, Santa Maria and Lompoc and was a member and president of the Guadalupe Joint Union School District for over 30 years. Mary was involved with Guadalupe Friends of the Library, Guadalupe Historical Society and Museum, American Legion and Red Hat Society, to name a few. In 2009 the Guadalupe Senior Advisory Committee formed and Mary served as chair from its inception until her death. Recognized for service, Mary served 25 years in the Santa Barbara County Education Office, over 300+ hours to the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program of the State of California, many hours of service to the Homeowners & Renters Assistance program in 2007, outstanding service of 358 hours to the Retired & Senior Volunteer Program of the Central Coast, her generous support of the NEA’s Read Across America, dedicated to children’s literacy. She was passionate about community education. Mary served as Grand Marshal of the Guadalupe Mexican Independence Day Parade. She volunteered services for tax assistance, many fund raising events and a generous donor to the CAC and Guadalupe Senior Center. Mary always rose to the occasion when things were needed and loved spending time with family and friends. Her home of faith is Compassionate Christian Center of Santa Maria. Preceded in death by her parents and 3 siblings, she leaves children, Mary Alyce Harris, Wanda Michelle Smith, Joseph Clarence Harris Jr, Theresa Louise Harris, Beverly Yvonne Harris, Shevonne Cecile Harris, 14 grandchildren, 17 great-grandchildren and 2 great-great- grandchildren, other relatives, and many friends & neighbors. The family expresses our thanks and appreciation for your prayers, gifts and flowers. The Mary Harris Memorial Fund is set up at Rabobank for any desired donations.

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