James E. (Turk) Harrison

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  • "Turk was a man who filled the room--with his stature, his..."
    - Chloe Harriman
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James E. (Turk) Harrison
AIKEN, SC - James E. (Turk) Harrison passed away Friday, January 22, 2016 at his home in Aiken, South Carolina.
He was born on December 7, 1926 in Old Hickory, Tennessee, a DuPont company town. The second child of six loving brothers and sisters, he was the oldest boy of Tennie and Red Harrison.
At seventeen, against his mother's wishes but with his father's permission, he joined the US Navy. It was 1944 and the world was at war. He served in the Asiatic Pacific Theatre aboard the aircraft carrier USS Boxer in Guam, Sai Pan and Northern Japan. He lived his life as he served, with honor and love of country.
With the help of the GI Bill and a football scholarship, he graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree from Middle Tennessee State University. Most people knew him as Turk, a football nickname that stuck. A gifted athlete, he played basketball, softball, track and was honored in the MTSU Football Hall of Fame.
Turk was an avid sportsman who also loved waterskiing and fishing. But, his true passion was his family. In 1949 he married the love of his life, Flora Lee Doty. God blessed them with four daughters, fifteen grandchildren, twenty-one great-grandchildren, and sixty-six wonderful years of marriage. With the birth of their four daughters he often joked that his dream of living in a sorority house had come true.
In 1952 the family moved to Aiken, SC where Turk continued his career with DuPont helping to build the Savannah River Plant. He worked in the Health Physics Department until his retirement in 1989.
He was a lover of tall tales and babies; a family man, gatekeeper of his daughter's boyfriends, the best dancer at any party. His life was filled with music, laughter, and joyful chaos.
In addition to his parents James Arthur Harrison and Tennie Shelton Harrison, Mr. Harrison was preceded in death by his sisters Lucille Harrison Redden and Joyce Harrison Lewis; his grandson Joshua David Hauseman and his great-granddaughter Macayla Grace Smoak.
He is survived by his wife Flora Doty Harrison; Siblings, Arthur Ray Harrison (Marty), Wilma Harrison Riggins (Charlie), and Larry Cleveland Harrison (Patsy); Daughters, Dianne Harrison Hauseman (David), Lynn Harrison Beaumont (Mark), Barbara Harrison Smoak (Rodney), and Becky Harrison Lawson (Scott); Grandchildren, Amber Hauseman Kaul, Laura (Black-eyed Susan) Christina Hauseman, Adam David Hauseman, Jennifer Beaumont Keuller, Ashley Beaumont Woodring, Leslie Beaumont Huguley, Whitney Beaumont Schaltenbrand, Kimberly Smoak Butler, Jeff Smoak, Austin Lee Smoak, Tina Smoak Schutte, Harrison James Jeffcoat Smoak, Robert James Buckley Lawson, and William Scott Lawson.
The family will receive friends beginning at 2:00 pm on Saturday, January 30, 2016 at George Funeral Home with services following at 3:00 pm in the Chapel. The Reverend Jeff Smoak will officiate.
In lieu of flowers, the family respectfully requests that memorial contributions be directed to charities that are dear to them: The Salvation Army, P.O. Box 269, Alexandria, VA 22314, The Batten's Disease Foundation, P.O. Box 50221, Austin, TX 78763 (beyondbatten.org), The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, 6931 Arlington Road, 2nd Floor, Bethesda, MD 20814, or the Polycysitic Kidney Foundation, 8330 Ward Parkway, Suite 510, Kansas City, MO 64114 (pkdcure.org).
The Historic George Funeral Home, 211 Park Ave., SW, Aiken, SC 29801 (803.649.6234), has charge of arrangements.
Expression of sympathy for the Harrison family may be left by visiting www.georgefuneralhomes.
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George Funeral Home & Cremation Center
211 Park Avenue, SW
Aiken, SC 29801
(803) 220-0728
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Published in The Aiken Standard and North Augusta Star on Jan. 28, 2016
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