Gene had been fighting a decade long battle with Alzheimer’s disease which finally came to an end November 14th at 12:13 am. He passed in to Heaven quietly in bed with his loving wife Henrietta by his side.
Clarence Eugene (Gene) Harless was the fourth of five children and was born in Arizona in 1928. His parents Robert and Agnes Harless were farmers who moved to Wasco about the time Gene was in Jr. High School. Gene started high school in Wasco but his family moved to Shafter during his freshman year.
Gene was a talented football, basketball, and track athlete and he also loved to box. Gene held records as a high hurdler which he was very proud of. Gene graduated from Shafter High in 1946. Gene was inducted into the Shafter High School Athletic Hall of fame on the day he passed. When he was told of his award before his death he smiled and his chest swelled with pride.
After High School he worked as a farmer with his dad and also laid linoleum. In 1953 he became a firefighter for the Bakersfield City Fire Department. Over the course of a 30 year long career, Gene moved through the ranks and retired as the Assistant Chief in 1983. After he retired he operated his company, Tiger Hose Towers where he built and sold Hose Towers to fire departments across the country.
Spending time with the family was his favorite thing to do. His great sense of humor, his hard work ethic, and his loving heart made him a man that you had to love and respect. Gene loved hunting, camping, and recreational shooting and loved taking his family along to do all of these activities. He is proceeded into Heaven by his parents, Jessie and Agnes Harless, brothers, Lloyd and Clyde, sisters, Alene and Nadene and his sons, Greg and Larry Harless.
He is survived by his loving wife of 67 years Henrietta, His daughter & son in law Jennifer & Ron Porter, daughters-in-law; Gail Harless and Shawna Harless Bobillot, Virginia Arenas. Grandchildren: Eric & Mindi, Ryan & Melissa, Nick, Hillarie & Shane, LeighAnn & Chuck, Travis & Teri, Mark & Krista, Brandon & Ihoreni, and Amber. Great-Grandchildren: Bretta, Emily, Sophia, Zaina, Sarah, Adam, Willow, Acacia, Anthony, Violet, Talia, Preston, Shalyn, Ray, Sam, Faith, Grace, Hope, Brandon, Mason, and Preston
Our family would like to especially thank his favorite nurse Linda Farmer, the precious staff at Deans Care Villa and Rob Harding from Kern River Family Mortuary.
Services will be held at Valley Baptist Church 4800 Fruitvale Ave, Bakersfield, Ca 93308 at 10 A.M. on Wednesday, November 18, 2015.
Published in Bakersfield Californian on Nov. 17, 2015