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Harry Moran

Harry Moran

Born In: Bradford Yorkshire, United Kingdom
Born: November 27th, 1927

Passed in: Dawson Creek, British Columbia, Canada
Passed on: May 21st, 2013

Henry Martin Moran, better known as Harry, was born on November 30th, 1927 in Bradford Yorkshire, England. He was the only son of Tim and Florence Moran. He had one sister, Margaret. Although Harry and his family lived in England, they were very Irish as his father’s family had originally come from County Mayo in the west of Ireland. Harry went to school in Bradford. He was very good in sports, especially soccer and track and field. He loved bike riding throughout England and Holland. Harry’s family was poor so he left school at fifteen to work with his Dad in the demolition business salvaging and selling parts from houses that had been damaged during the Second World War. At 19, Harry developed tuberculosis. He had surgery to collapse most of his left lung. Over the next six years, Harry spent most of his time in hospital resting to recuperate. He continued to have lung problems the rest of his life. Harry was always a very positive person and saw the good things that came from being in the hospital. He said, “I didn’t have to pay rent, cook or clean. I could rest, read and chat to the other patients.” It was during these six years that Harry got really interested in English literature, art and music, especially classical and folk. His favourite singers were the Clancy Brothers. Marie and the children remember on car drives, Harry would have the Clancy Brother’s CD’s playing as he sang along and kept time with his fingers on the steering wheel. Harry also became more interested in his Catholic faith. His faith remained very strong for the rest of his life. When he left the hospital, Harry decided to go back to school. He upgraded to finish high school and wrote a long English essay for one of two full scholarships to go to Oxford University and ended up winning one of them in 1956 (age 29). He entered Magdalen College at Oxford to study English Literature and Composition. Harry missed having the writer C.S. Lewis (Narnia books) as his one-to-one tutor for 2 hours every week by one and half years. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature and Composition in 1959 and his masters in 1962, both from Oxford. He taught in England for several years but sometimes had to take time off work due to his lung problems. Harry had a lot of sorrow in his life. His only sister died at age 23 and two years later his mother died at age 49. Also his father developed tuberculosis. Harry’s strong faith in God and his positive attitude got him through this. After his father died in 1969, Harry decided he would come to Canada. He took a year of teacher training at Durham University as it was required in Canada. At Durham, he met another student, John Morgan. John and his wife Maureen were like family to Harry. They played guitar and sang, sometimes in the English pubs. The Morgans remained life-long friends. In August 1971, Harry came to Dawson Creek to teach as a volunteer at Notre Dame Catholic School. Here he met many fine people from several different countries of the world. Harry was well liked by all. He was a gentleman, had a great sense of humor and led everyone in singing while he played his guitar. It was here that Harry met a young teacher from Prince Edward Island named Marie O’Brien.
Over the next year, Harry and Marie found that they had a lot in common; their strong Catholic faith, their love of literature, Irish culture and of course, music, especially Irish folk music. How could Marie not fall in love with such a kind, gentle, witty man who also wrote poetry! After teaching for two years at Notre Dame, they were married on July 3rd, 1973 at St. Teresa’s Catholic Church at Moberly Lake with family and friends to help them celebrate. They wanted to stay in the Peace area and got jobs with the Fort St. John school district. They taught for two years at Osborn School, 40 miles from Fort St. John. In June 1974, Tim was born. Harry and Marie missed their friends in Dawson Creek so when Northern Lights College was opening, Harry applied to teach English there. He got the job teaching first and second year University transfer courses so they moved to Dawson Creek. Harry was the first English teacher and was highly respected by staff and students. He always wore a shirt, tie and Irish hat. His sense of humour, both verbal and written, amused many people. He loved to make people laugh. Marie says Harry rarely ever said anything negative about anyone. He taught at Northern Lights College for over 20 years until he retired. The Moran family had expanded to include Christine, born in January 1976, and Andrew, born in May 1978. Harry loved his family and later really enjoyed his grandsons. In retirement, he continued to volunteer at Notre Dame Church as a reader, chairman of the parish council, sang in the choir for funerals and went with Marie to do church services in the old and new Rotary Manor. Harry always loved driving so he volunteered to drive for Meals on Wheels. When Harry was in his mid sixties, Marie noticed that his memory was failing and he was showing signs of dementia. In September 1998, he went to Prince George for extensive mental tests and was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. He went on medication and was able to live at home for the next nine years. In the fall of 2007, things got worse. Harry’s doctor along with his long term care nurse said he needed to go into a care home. In October 2007, Harry moved into his new home at Rotary Manor. He was dearly loved by the staff as he was cheerful and made them laugh. He received wonderful care at Rotary until his death on May 21st. He died peacefully with Marie and Andrew at his side at age 85.
Harry was predeceased by his parents Tim and Florence Moran, his sister Margaret and his stepmother Mary.
Harry is survived by his loving wife; Marie of 39 years, his son Tim (Donna) and newest grandson Harry Moran, his daughter Christine (Rick) Kryzczkowski and grandsons Joel, Darren, Jayden and Colby, and his son Andrew. He is also survived by his step-sister Wendy (Donald) MacLean and their family in England and by Marie’s seven brothers and sisters and their families.
A prayer service was held for Harry at Notre Dame Catholic Church on Sunday, May 26, 2013.
A mass of Christian burial was held at Notre Dame Catholic Church on Monday, May 27, 2013.
Father Michael Anyasoro officiated. Interment followed in the Brookside Cemetery.
Special memories presented by Harry’s sons Tim and Andrew.
For friends so wishing, donations may be made in memory of Harry to the Harry Moran Memorial Scholarship fund for a student at NLC, attention Donna Kane, NLC foundation 11401-8th street Dawson Creek, B.C. V1G 4G2
Very Respectfully Reynars Funeral Home & Crematorium • www.reynars.com




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