William (Bill) Harris passed Friday, February 3, 2023. Born in Portland, ME on June 15, 1937 to Amelia Eleanor Champlin and William E. Morgan. Bill is survived by his loving wife, Joanne Gillespie Harris; son, Mark William, daughter, Jill F. Shultz; grand-daughter, Stephanie Swavely and husband Alex; and brother, John A. Harris and Bill’s former wife, Dorothy R. Haley.
Bill was multi-talented and excelled in everything he attempted. After graduating from Wachusett Regional High School in Holden, MA where he created the mascot “The Mountaineer” he went on to become a cook/manager for White Tower, The RockingChair Buttery, Howard Johnson’s, and Friendly Ice Cream. He began his career in the automobile industry in New England, beginning with Volkswagen. When the oil crisis began, he came to PA as general manager of Warren Pontiac-Buick in Exton.
After cars he and Joanne bought an historic restaurant (The Golden Eagle Tavern) in Lancaster, PA. Missing Chester County, they returned to Downingtown where he went to work for the Chadds Ford Winery (owned by Lee & Eric Miller) where he stayed for 19 years. When that ended, he leased the Rusty Gate Antique Mall with over 40 dealers. They bought a house in Florida and became “snowbirds.”
Bill was a Navy Veteran; belonged to the American Legion, the Philadelphia-Continental Chapter, PSSAR, Downingtown Moose, and was awarded the Pennsylvania Restaurant Association’s “Associate of the Year” and was a past member of the Knights of Columbus in MA.
He and Joanne loved to travel and visited up and down the East and West Coast, Bermuda, Jamaica, Cozumel. France and Italy, Ireland, England and Canada. He loved cooking (including a week studying at the Cordon Blue in Paris); teaching wine classes and becoming an Honorary Kentucky Coronel (obtaining his Auctioneer’s Certificate); he also enjoyed watercoloring.
He and Joanne were married 43 years ago at the Brandywine River Museum and honeymooned in Greece and the Greek Islands.
A funeral service will be held at 10:30 a.m., Monday, February 13, 2023 at the Harris Mountain Funeral & Cremation Service, 1030 E. Lincoln Highway, Coatesville. Relatives and friends may visit with the family from 9:15 to 10:15 a.m. at the funeral home.
Interment will be in St. Cecilia Cemetery, Coatesville.
Mass cards would be appreciated.
Funeral services will be live-streamed.
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