WWII Heroes - Tribute Site by Q Madp - www.OurWarHeroes.org

Calvin Harrison

Calvin Harrison

Florence, South Carolina

February 13, 2014

Age Military Rank Unit/Location
91 Navy  

 

 

Calvin Harrison

Obituary
"For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing." II Timothy 4: 6-8 

Mr. Calvin Harrison was born October 17, 1922 in Florence, South Carolina. He was the son of Mr. and Mrs. William and Rosa Johnson Harrison. He departed this earthly life on Thursday, February 13, 2014 at his residence after an extended illness. 
Mr. Harrison attended the public schools of Florence County before moving to New York City, NY. There, he enlisted in the United States Navy in April 1943, and served in WWII. He later enlisted in the Merchant Marines where he served aboard the USAT Joseph V. Connolly, the first ship sent to the European theatre to retrieve the bodies of fallen soldiers killed in WWII. After completing his service with the Merchant Marines, Mr. Harrison returned to New York where he worked as a cab driver and was a member of King Solomon's Grand Lodge in Harlem, NY as a free and accepted Mason. He later became employed with Century Brass in Waterbury, CT, from which he retired in 1987. 
Mr. Harrison returned home to Florence after retirement and later became a member of Florence Baptist Temple along with his wife, Bernice. 
In addition to his parents, Mr. Harrison was preceded in death by his first wife, Beatrice Jones Harrison and two sons, Reginald Harrison and Ricky Graham.
Left behind to cherish his memory are: his wife, Bernice Graham Harrison; eight children, six of whom resulted from the union with Beatrice, Geraldine "Geri" Evans and Shirley Woods, both of Savannah, GA; Calvin Harrison, Jr. of New York, NY; Addie "Cookie" Hampton of Babylon, NY; Yvonne Curtain of Jamaica Queens, NY; Mildred Mitchell of Hempstead, NY, Derrick Harrison and Jeffrey Graham, both of Florence, SC; and a host of grandchildren, great grandchildren, great-great grandchildren, nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.
 
From Carolina News Channel 15 carolinalive.com 02/19/14:

Donations needed to bury World War II veteran
by Continuous News Desk
Posted: 02.19.2014 at 3:07 PM


A World War II veteran in Florence, whose hospice nurse was working to get him recognition for his service, died peacefully in his sleep Thursday at the age of 91.

Lisa Hyatt, with Hospice Care of Tri County, was taking care of Harrison.

Harrison, an African-American, volunteered to serve and never saw the recognition so many other veterans did.

Hyatt got Harrison veterans benefits to help with his medical expenses and then began working to get him local and state recognition for his service to our country.

"The fact that he was an African American man in World War II, and he wasn't drafted. He volunteered to serve his country. A country that was discriminating against him during that time yet he volunteered to serve it. To me that speaks so much," Hyatt told us in a December 2013 interview.

Now, members of the community are trying to raise enough money to give Harrison the veterans burial he deserves, according to Bill Kryzk, with Honor Flight Myrtle Beach.

Donations can be made to the Florence Baptist Temple, which is where his service will eventually be held, Kryzk said.
Florence Baptist Temple
2308 S. Irby Street
Florence, SC 29505
Harrison has already been accepted to the Florence National Cemetery.

From WBTW News 13 wbtw.com 12/23/13:

World War II veteran in Florence gets thousands of Christmas cards
Posted: Dec 23, 2013 8:27 AM PST
Updated: Dec 24, 2013 8:18 AM PST
By Nick Sturdivant

For years one man in the Pee Dee battled racial injustices and personal struggle all while serving our country. Now people from across the globe are reaching out to express their appreciation for him.

Thousands of cards, gifts and even heartfelt letters pile in by the bundles, all to say thank you. They're saying thank you to Calvin Harrison, a 91-year-old World War II veteran who is terminally ill

Lisa Hyatt, Calvin's social worker said, "We have more good days than bad... A lot of the times now he smiles."

The outpouring of love and support gas lifted his spirits this holiday season.

Hyatt said, "Watching him open those cards and go through those arrangements, that was a Christmas present for me."

For nearly ten years Harrison served in both the Navy and Merchant Marines and just recently he was granted disability benefits from the VA after being involved in an explosion.

For years Harrison went unrecognized for his efforts in the war. Then his story hit social media, and his story was on Facebook and Twitter via Honor Flight Myrtle Beach. The tweets dominoed and people from around the world sent in letters and also took to social media to express their gratitude.

Harrison said, "It's hard for me to express, the way I feel."

And as the gifts and letters continue to come in, people closest to him notice a boost in not only his spirits, but their's as well.

Hyatt said, "We have gotten as much out of this as he has, just by seeing the healing that has taken place."

Click To Return To Main Page

 Don't Let The Memory Of Them Drift Away

Copyright 2014  Q Madp  PO Box 86888  Portland OR 97286-0888  www.OurWarHeroes.org