1929 ~ 2014|
Colleen Riggs Harris died in a peaceful sleep in her home in Provo, Utah on Sunday, February 2, 2014 . She was vibrant and lively for 84 years but after a fall and infection she was allowed to stop suffering and return to rejoice with her parents, Ben and Myrtle Noble Riggs and her brothers and sisters, Elaine Green, Lyle Riggs, Noble Riggs, Melba Lamoreaux and Reid Riggs, mother-in-law Leona Larson, and a son-in-law Gordon White.
Colleen was born in 1929 and raised in the Gilbert/Chandler area of Arizona, giving her deep "farming" roots. She achieved high honors in schooling and everything she did. She was especially proud to get her pilots license before she was old enough to get a drivers license. She wanted to be flying every plane she saw the rest of her life.
She married Jerry Harris, who loved her the first moment he saw her as a soloist in a Messiah production. Jerry and Colleen honeymooned on the trip to Northwestern for Master Degrees in Music. They always taught music and participated in musical events throughout their 60 years of marriage, first in Texas, then Phoenix and eventually both came to teach in the Music Department of BYU in 1970. Colleen taught voice her whole life and performed herself with her lyric high soprano voice in too many places to begin to mention. She and Jerry were both asked to be in the Tabernacle Choir, faithfully serving as musical missionaries. Colleen also conducted many different choirs, with the latest being the Florence Madsen Memorial Chorus of Provo, sweet ladies who perform in care centers in the region and present concerts twice yearly. Colleen and Jerry were a musical team for over 60 years.
Colleen loved the Jesus Christ and his gospel and served in many positions in the LDS Church. She and Jerry also completed a Family History Mission in the Ventura, CA mission, during the earthquake. Colleen also loved gardening, reading, sports, and most of all her family.
She is now busy in spirit, while we remain here to continue her love: husband, H. Jarolde Harris (Jerry), daughters Colleen Jr. (Mike Lee), Carrie Morris (Dale) Christie Leith (Chad) with 15 grandchildren and their spouses, six great-grandchildren with two more on the way.
A viewing will be held Friday evening at the Grandview 5th Ward, 1350 W. 1600 N., in Provo, 7 to 9 p.m. Saturday, February 8, a service will begin at 10 a.m. at the same location followed by a grave dedication in the Springville Evergreen Cemetery.
If there are errors in this copy, it is because Colleen was our multi-language expert and best proofreader. Condolences may be sent to the family at www.SundbergOlpinMortuary.com
As her body failed, her words to all were of love, encouraging us to love one another more dearly. Her lively spark kept us smiling, and she showed all she met that she genuinely loved them. If by oversight we have failed to contact you, please know that her love for you was very real, and still is.
Published in Deseret News on Feb. 5, 2014