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In Loving Memory

Kenton Dale Harris

July 4, 1932 – March 9, 2021

The family of Kenton Dale Harris of Friendswood announces his passing on March 9, 2021 at the age of 88.  Kenton was born in Kingman, Kansas.  He graduated from Cheney High School in Kansas where he was named an All-State running back.  He played varsity football for and graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Physical Education from Friends University in Wichita, Kansas in 1953.  He received a Master's degree from Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa while coaching at William Penn University.

Kenton served in 868th Field Artillery Battalion in the United States Army from 1956 to 1958 and continued his career as a teacher and coach in Elkhart Kansas in 1958.   Kenton spent most of his Teaching, Coaching and Administrative career as a Friendswood Mustang in Friendswood in 1971 and retired 25 years later.  Friendswood is where Kenton and his wife Karolena (K) raised their two Children, Kevin and Kelly.  They were married for 62 beautiful years.  Kenton was a loving Dad and Papa.  He was a man of integrity and commitment and became a member of the Friendswood Friends Church in 1965.  Kenton served at the church as a Sunday school teacher, youth group leader and started and led the Fellowship of Christian Athletes at Friendswood High School. The Fellowship of Christian Athletes elected Kenton as State “Huddle Leader of the Year” in 1986.  Kenton served on and led the Ministry and Oversight committee at the Friendswood Friends Church for 10 years.

Kenton was a friend to many, a school and athletic leader and served as an example to many, many of Friendswood High School’s students and athletes.  On the field with head coach Henry Winston and as the Friendswood Mustangs’ Defensive Coordinator, Kenton helped lead the Mustangs to win the State Championship in 1973 and the Mustangs were in the Texas 2A and 3A playoffs for most of the 1970’s.  “Coach had a great influence over numerous people as he has always lived by a vigilant faith with integrity, as well as compassion and respect for others.  Over the years, many have called him their mentor.” Kenton was inducted into the Friendswood Mustang Hall of Honor and in 2015 was named a Friendswood High School Distinguished Alumni.

Kenton is survived by his wife, Karolena Joyce Boyle Harris; brother Leland Harris; two sons and families, Kevin Sean Harris, Mary Lasley Shoults Harris, grandsons, James Michael Harris and Kenton Ray Harris.  Kelly Don Harris, Shannon Raye Knowles Harris and grandson, Charles Conner Harris.

He was also preceded in death by his dad, Delbert M. Harris and his mother Florence C. McAfferee Harris; sisters, Marjorie Harris, Maxine Harris Brooks and brother, Richard Harris.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, March 20, 2021 at 10:00 A.M. at the Friendswood Friends Church, 502 S. Friendswood Dr., Friendswood, Texas 77546 with Rev. David Bridges officiating. Please note that social distancing in the church and masks will be required.  

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made in his name to FCA.  A link to donate online is: https://my.fca.org/houstonmemorial or you can mail a check to: FCA, 8847 West Sam Houston Pkwy N, Houston, TX 77040.  Please be sure to include his name on the memo line.

Condolences may be sent to the Harris family in care of Jeter Memorial Funeral Home at www.jeterfuneralhome.com.

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12 thoughts on “Kenton Dale Harris”

  1. Friendswood has lost a fine man who will be deeply missed by all. Coach Harris had a heart of gold, and a compassion to serve . He was a “fisher of men”, and a man of God. He made a difference in many lives as a Coach and teacher in FISD. A humble man who didn’t seek attention but his heart and strength of character collected many admirers who respected him. I remember him as the shop teacher in high school in the 1970’s, all the guys loved his class! As a respected Coach, for the State Championship team in 1973 when football united the town . My three brothers were also fortunate to have them as their coach and shop teacher. Once retired, he chose to return to FHS to coach the Freshmen. Friendswood athletics was gifted once again! He was a mentor to my son and my husband during his high school years and his coaching reign, and a dear friend to our family.
    My heartfelt condolences to K and family. He loved family and was proud of his grandchildren! Coach Harris saw the best in people and their potential.
    I never heard him complain in his later years when his body was declining on him. His smile said it all!
    God bless the family for their loss . Peace and comfort to them in this difficult time.
    May he Rest In Peace.

  2. The world was a better place with Kenton Harris in it. K, Kevin, and Kelly, you have my thoughts, my prayers, and my heart. You lived with a true angel. He fought the good fight, the right way and taught everyone around him to do the same. He was one in a million and will be missed.

  3. Joel Hannemann

    I, like many many others, was blessed to have Kenton Harris in my life. I learned so much from him as a young educator and athletic trainer, and that mentoring guided me then and still today. He walked the walk and treated people the way God asks us to all do. K, Kevin, and Kelly, thanks for sharing Kenton with us- we were all blessed by his presence. Peace and comfort to all of you and your families.

  4. Leland and Sharon Harris

    Kenton was born and raised in a fine Christian home. He never wavered from those beliefs. He was an inspiration to one and all, especially me, his little brother. I remember when I was a freshman in high school, Kenton gave me a pair of his old football shoes with "Mutt" written on the back. I was really proud of those shoes. They fit okay, but I never could fill 'em. Blessings brother. Till we meet again.

  5. Kenton was a mentor to me while we coached together at Friendswood High School. I not only learned a great deal about football, but, how to treat others with the love that Jesus gave. May God bless Kay, Kevin and Kelly and may you feel His presence during this time of grief.

    1. Praying for God's perfect peace and comfort for K, Kevin, Kelly, family and friends. I loved Kenton Harris. He meant so much to me as he did to countless others. His influence reaches far and wide. The Godly way he lived his life was an example to all of us who call him friend. I first met Kenton when he called me to ask me if I would work with him on a Lay Renewal project sponsored by several local churches in Friendswood. Some time later, I joined the staff at Friendswood High School and it didn't take long for me to see his down to earth brilliance as a shop teacher and on the athletic field. His students and athletes would run through a brick wall for the man. He was that well respected. Once he asked me to go with him as a counselor at a Fellowship of Christian Athletes retreat. I sat there in awe as Kenton opened God's Word and began sharing the love of Jesus with these young athletes. One of those young men would later become my son in law. He had a passion to serve the Lord and it was evident in the way he lived his life. When I became Principal at FHS, I asked Kenton to join with Marlene Kennedy to form my administrative team. He was reluctant at first because he loved the classroom and coaching. I knew him to be a fair disciplinarian and much of what the Assistant Principal does is handle students that fail to follow school rules or misbehave in some form or fashion. "Scallywags" is what he affectionately called them. All of his "Scallywags" have gone on to lead successful lives because of his mentoring. After two successful years in that in that role he asked to be reassigned to his first love the classroom and coaching. Kenton believed, as do I, that the real heros in the school are the teachers and coaches. That is why Friendswood High School is the best high school in the state. Kenton and I felt like we were a small part in the leadership transition from the old guard – Floyd Brown, Ted Thomas, Clyde Bond and Walter Wilson and the new guard Curtis Wilson. Gary Wrinkle, Myrlene Kennedy and now Mark Griffon. All outstanding leaders that have successfully guided FHS to excellence. Kenton and I often talked about how proud we were to be Mistangs. I will miss the Whataburger outings with Kenton and Joel Hannigan reminiscing about family, the school district and community that we loved. Kenton loved his work but not like he loved his family. He oftened bragged on K and her many talents. He loved his boys. He enjoyed being with Kevin and Kelly as they came up through the schools. He especially enjoyed working with them on the football field. He adored his grandchildren.. Kenton, old friend, until we meet again "Well done thy good and faithful servant". You will be missed but certainly not forgotten. What a legacy he left.

  6. John & Dorothy Haw

    Dorothy and I extend our sympathies and prayers to Kay and the whole family. They were warmly welcoming to us during the years we were at Friendswood Friends Church.

  7. Evelyn Dawson,

    Coach Harris was a tremendous influence on the young men growing up in the Friendswood area, including my two sons. The world needs more men like him. And I can’t help but believe, that because of his amazing example of what a good man is, many of those young men are now being examples to another generation.

  8. John & Mina Newman

    Kenton touched so many hearts and lives, and he will be greatly missed. Heaven holds a very dear and special angel. K, Kelly, Keven and families, our heartfelt thoughts and prayers are with you. Love, John & Mina Newman

  9. Coach Harris was the first teacher I had at FHS in the fall of 1970. He explained how he had no money in his desk and how he despised a thief anyway, there was no room for a thief in his classroom. Then he assigned me locker #1. Coach, Mardi and I could not make the celebration of a life well lived. Do me a favor, find Mardi and sing some praises to Jesus in heaven together.

  10. Dear Mrs. Harris, Kevin, and Kelly Our heart and prayers are with the family. I Just found out about Coach's passing the day before yesterday. I loved Coach Harris so much. He was my science teacher for one year and football coach for 2 years. He was the main influence on me becoming a teacher and coach. I was so fortunate that I was able to coach Kelly for one season in football! I was also able to meet Kevin. It was so great to tell Kelly and Kevin how much their father meant to me. Coach Harris was a great man and he will be be remembered always. Sincerely, Coach Chuck Hammack

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311 N. Friendswood Dr.
Friendswood, Texas 77546


311 N. Friendswood Dr.
Friendswood, Texas 77546

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