• Beckwith Mortuary, Inc. - Larned
    Larned, KS
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David Earl Harbert

David Earl Harbert

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June 24, 2018

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Preview Entry
June 24, 2018

Please don't submit copyrighted work; original poems, songs or prayers welcomed.

Legacy.com reviews all Guest Book entries to ensure appropriate content. Our staff does not correct grammar or spelling. Privacy Policy | Terms of Use
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February 14, 2004
Earl Harbert, B.A.C.B.
We came a long way from the swimming pool deck where we met, in Larned, Ks. (1970). We shared a lot of history, experience, and friendship in 30 + yrs. with Red Cross. I've always been proud of your successes and thankful for your help in mine. Rest in peace my friend, you are missed. BF
January 21, 2004
Earl lived next door to us in Wichita many years ago. When he moved away, his sister Janie moved in so we kept up with their activities by visiting over the backyard fence--even though there wasn't a fence there! We always looked forward to seeing Earl when he came back to Wichita for a visit. We always admired the closeness of their family--particularly through the illness of their Mom and then Earl. Janie, what a fine daughter and sister you are. We miss you living next door, but couldn't be happier for you. Our deepest sympathy in the loss of your brother.

(We finally realized why we did not know about Earl's passing sooner. We left on vacation on October 5.)
October 21, 2003
How much I miss your laugh and that great smile! We had so many great times together. Things are just not the same without you.
October 20, 2003
Terry and Paula,

Our thoughts and prayers are with you. May you find comfort in fond memories and the knowledge that there are many who care.

Ralph and Bonnie Stumbaugh
October 17, 2003
Earl, I miss that wide smile and eagerness to help. For any project or problem, we could always count on you for honest (and usually helpful) opinions -- including those no one else would express out loud. It just isn't the same at Red Cross without you here.
I will never forget those most enjoyable conversations together over lunch, dinner, or just a beer, in Chicago and Virginia.
October 17, 2003
We called you Earl the Pearl and the Roo-Roo King, but mostly we called you friend. We will always keep close to our hearts the memories of all the great times we had with you. Our thoughts and prayers go out to all of Earl's family. Janie and Guy, we hope you can take comfort knowing that you gave Earl great peace being there with him when he needed you most.
October 17, 2003
With deepest sympathy to Earl's family. Our thoughts are with you.
October 16, 2003
For those of you who were unable to make Earl's service:
A chill wind was blowing 30 mph from the north, and clouds hung low over Larned Cemetary Hill. Rob Kornacki, Cathy's husband, gave a short synopsis of Earl's life. A Red Cross friend of Earl's from Annapolis gave a longer, quite eloquent talk that revealed much of Earl's professional
career and relationships with folks on the East Coast. Three from there were in attendance. Beer play two tunes in the howling wind, after which Earl's nieces and nephews each released a yellow balloon.
All blew straight south, held low by the wind, and drew our attention to the bright yellowing of the trees along Pawnee Creek, about one-half mile below us. It seemed a fitting synergy to the moment.

We then retreated to to the Kuntry Club, where pictures of Earl were laid out on the pool table, and another table was filled with the many awards and plaques that Earl had received over the years, nationally significant in some cases. There was also a picture of him with George Wallace and his wife, when the governor made Earl an
honorary colonel in the Alabama militia. (The governor's wife, it seems, had been so impressed with Earl's work down there that she had George summon a patrol car to bring Earl to the governor's mansion --
when he was on his way out of the hotel to catch a plane back to DC. When the ceremony was over, the the gov called the airport and held Earl's plane on the tarmack until the trooper could get him to his flight.)

During lunch, Terry presided over a story-telling session, just memories of Earl, in which several folks participated. As things broke up about 2 p.m., I stepped outside to clear skies and warm sunshine. The weather seemed a fitting metaphor for the day: a somber beginning for us, but the promise of something brighter for Earl. I pray it is so.
October 15, 2003
I wasn’t feeling too perky at the lunch after Earl’s service the other day, so I didn’t volunteer any stories. So here’s what I would have said. Perhaps it will help some of you remember the man we all loved.
Like many of you in the class of ‘66, I have been friends with Earl since early grade school, when he was known as David (or David Earl, to some). In fact, to my knowledge, everyone liked Earl. Our senior year, he was class president, and with good reason: he was a friend to all.
Earl and I were close friends through school. In 9th grade, I went to Earl because I felt the need to fill a spiritual void in my life. He got me involved in the Presbyterian Church, and I was baptized when I was 16. This, I believe, paved a path that would eventually lead me away from the excesses of our early (and late-early and mid-) adulthood to a personal relationship with Christ.
But I’m not writing this to witness to ya’ll. Earl and became closer after college. We spent many, many times partying and took trips together. We explored the Arkansas River on hot summer days when he had a break from his Graves Trucking job, and I visited him during his short stint in Dodge City..
We took one trip in the Red Cross van to New Orleans, with a side trip to Jackson to bring Terry about 200 cases of Coors, which was unavailable in Mississippi at that time. (I don’t know whether he sold it on the black market or what.) We drove to the Panhandle of Florida and slept on the beach one night, just to say we had been there. In the morning, a toothless old man woke us up babbling like a drunk. Neither of us could understand a word he said. We finally realized he was Cajun and politely made our way into the van and departed the Sunshine State.
During the 12 and one-half years I lived in Wichita, Earl and I played often and consoled one another through each of our divorces.
After I had remarried (finally having got it right) and three days after my first son, Logan, was born, he dropped by my house to take me to watch KU and OU duke it out in the 1988 NCAA national basketball championship game. Logan was asleep in his crib, and we quietly slipped in to take a look before leaving. He grinned from ear-to-ear and said, “I envy you, man.” I was proud, yet it took me off guard that Earl would envy me.
It was a memorable night in many ways. A group of Larnedites and other various misfits gathered at the Flicker Lounge to watch KU emerge victorious. We almost tore the place down.
As I have driven the highways between Pratt, Larned, and Wichita the past weeks, dozens of Earl-thoughts like these have floated through my mind, but one, inexplicably, always came first:
We were in early grade school, about 1955 or so. It was the heyday of the Hammer horror films starring Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing. Earl and I wore new parkas -- those heavy-hooded winter coats with the fake fur lining around the edge of the hood. I believe the movie was a remake of “Frankenstein,” and we sat in the front row with our parkas on backward. Whenever the monster appeared, we flipped the parka hoods over our heads until the music hinted that this horrifying apparition had departed the screen.
Shortly after I heard that Earl was diagnosed with cancer, I called, and we talked for some time, partly about his disease and partly just about old times. I mentioned this incident, and he reacted in that soft, slow, delighted tone of voice he often used when recalling some fond memory: “Oh, yeah. I had forgotten about that.” Then his recollection became enthusiastic, expository. “That was right after the Korean War, and the U.S. had realized what a useful garment the parka was, so it had just made its way into our commercial market.”
I had never thought of that, and I will never forget Earl bringing up this small, arcane bit of trivia. He was always doing that, adding some historical background that enlivened the mundane. But then again, he was, I am convinced, the smartest kid in our class.
And that’s the story I wanted to tell Saturday.
October 15, 2003
Terry, Cathie, Guy and Janie
Thinking of you all everyday. Love and Miss ya. Aunt Sue

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