Christmas 05


Edna (Hadden) Harris

January 11, 1922 ~ December 19, 2018 (age 96)
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Edna H. Harris If Edna (Hadden) Harris had a motto, it would be “Keep busy.” She did exactly that for almost 97 years. She was born on January 11, 1922 in Manchester as the first child of the late Thomas and Rebecca (Martin) Hadden. She and her sisters, the late Rita Davidson of Manchester and Eleanor Brook of Coventry, were deeply proud of their Irish heritage. Edna enjoyed a loving marriage to Richard L. Harris and thrived in her role as his wife and as mother of their daughter Patricia. When she became a widow in her early 50s, Edna forged a new life as “Auntie” to several generations of extended family. She loved Christmas and her Christmas Eve party is a much-anticipated family tradition. She reveled in watching each generation of children be born, grow, and mature. Few family members are without a hand-knit scarf, hat, or mittens to keep them warm in the winter. She also became a second mother to her daughter's dearest childhood friends from the close-knit Manchester neighborhood where Edna lived most of her life. Edna continued to work, at least part time, until she was 93 because she so enjoyed the friendship and companionship of her colleagues at Roosevelt & Cross in East Hartford. She was a lifelong member of St. Mary's Episcopal Church in Manchester, where she taught Sunday school, was a member of Girls Friendly Society, and the Altar Guild. She particularly enjoyed decorating the church for Christmas and working on the annual fair. She was also a volunteer for American Red Cross blood drives, and participated eagerly in church programs to provide holiday meals and gifts for those in need. Even with the comfort of her many pampered cats, Edna faced sadness and difficult passages in her life. She also endured considerable physical pain in her later years. Yet when she was asked, even near the end, she declared that she had enjoyed a happy life. She died peacefully with family by her side on December 19, 2018. Her family thanks the caregivers who enabled her to live out her days at home. She is survived by her daughter Patricia Harris Dixon and her son-in-law David Lyon of Cambridge, Massachusetts, by her sister Eleanor Brook, and by her nieces, nephews and their children and grandchildren, as well as by friends who became family. A calling hour will be held on Thursday, December 27, 2018 from 10–11 a.m. at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church, 41 Park St., Manchester, followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at 11 a.m. Burial will be in Buckland Cemetery, Manchester. Memorial contributions may be made to the St. Mary’s Episcopal Church Altar Guild. You may also honor Edna's memory by always being happy at Christmas and giving a gift to a child in need. To leave an online condolence, please visit

Donations may be made to:

St. Mary's Episcopal Church Memorial Fund
41 Park Street, Manchester CT 06040

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