Lyme - Paul C. Harper Jr., former chairman of Needham Harper Worldwide advertising agency, died on Saturday, Dec. 7, 2013, of complications from pneumonia. He was 92 years old.
Mr. Harper was born in Coblenz, Germany, on Dec. 16, 1920, where his father and mother, Paul C. Harper and Anne-Lindsay White, were stationed in the American Occupation Forces. Upon completion of his service, his father moved the family to Evanston, Ill., where Mr. Harper was raised. He graduated with Yale University's class of 1942 and enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps, serving in Saipan and Iwo Jima as an artillery captain. He was awarded the Bronze Star and was later promoted to major.
Over the course of his life, Mr. Harper developed a passion for the arts. While serving as chairman for Needham Harper Worldwide, he also served on the board of The Vermont Studio, The Museum of Modern Art, The Brooklyn Museum, The New School, and later he served as chairman of the Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts. He and his wife, Eleanor, established fellowships at both the Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts and The Vermont Studio to encourage aspiring artists. Upon his retirement to Lyme, he pursued his lifelong passion of painting. His landscapes reflected his deep love of nature. He was an avid hiker and canoeist and often disappeared into the woods for hours at a time with his easel and paints.
He is survived by his wife of 67 years, Eleanor Emery Harper; his six children, Diana, Jessica, William, Lindsay, Charles, and Sam; 14 grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.
A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 16, 2013, at the First Congregational Church of Old Lyme, 2 Ferry Road, Old Lyme.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made in Mr. Harper's name to The Vermont Studio, PO Box 613, Johnson, VT 05656.
To share a memory of Mr. Harper or send a condolence to his family, please visit www.rwwfh.com
Arrangements by the Robinson, Wright & Weymer Funeral Home in Centerbrook.
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Published by The Day on Dec. 11, 2013.