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John Harlan '55 April 26, 2021 1:38 PM updated: April 26, 2021 1:41 PM

John Lewis Harlan
JANUARY 31, 1933 – MARCH 29, 2021

John Lewis Harlan, age 88 of Temple passed away on Monday, March 29, 2021. He passed from this earth peacefully surrounded by his family and awoke in the arms of his heavenly Father who he loved and served all the days of his life.

A memorial celebration will be held at Scanio-Harper Funeral Home in Temple on Wednesday, April 14 at 4:00 pm. Pastor Rusty Campbell with First Lutheran Church of Temple will officiate the celebration. John Lewis was born January 31, 1933 to Dr. R.K. and Ruth Harlan in Temple. He graduated from Temple High School in 1951 and continued his education as a fighting Texas Aggie! While at Temple High John was an outstanding athlete lettering in football, basketball and baseball. This is where he also met the love of his life, Alice Persky and their courtship continued until their marriage on March 23, 1957 at the Temple Lutheran Church.

While attending Texas A&M, John Lewis proudly served all four years in the Corps of Cadets and graduated with a degree in Animal Husbandry in 1955. After graduating from Texas A&M, he entered the US Air Force and became a pilot assigned to fighter jets and bombers. He and Alice were stationed at Connelly Air Force Base in Waco and he was a commissioned officer as Captain in the US Air Force until is honorable discharged in 1969.

John Lewis and Alice, made their home in Temple and were blessed to raise 4 wonderful children, Julie Doering Harlan of Morgan’s Point, John Lewis Harlan Jr and wife Susan of Dayton, Jackie Ralston and husband Jack of Temple and Jay Harlan. John’s career spanned many years in Temple. He worked for Keifer Marshall Insurance, Tex-O-Cal Hardwoods, Harlan Hardwoods and Curtis Lumber Company. After retiring from the lumber business in 1990, he and Alice made a second home at the family ranch in south Texas and begin the family hunting business. They entertained many people and made many friends when they started the Doering-Harlan Whitetail Ranch.

As an active outdoorsman and sportsman, John loved being with his family and teaching them the outdoors. The family spent every summer vacationing in Rockport, Texas catching as many speckled trout as possible to stock the freezer. He could be found camping and fishing the Colorado River at Lemon’s Camp for white bass and would float for miles down the river in his self-made inner tube to find the perfect fishing hole! The winter hunting season was spent with all the family at The Ranch. He maintained his pilot’s license for many years and would take his Cessna airplane out for a spin on Sundays after church. But his biggest enjoyment was golf. He and Alice both shared a passion and love of the game for close to 50 years. He won many championships on his own, with friends and with Alice. He was a well accomplished player that played with many PGA professionals at the Byron Nelson Classic Pro-Ams and the Glen Campbell Los Angeles Open Pro-Ams. He was fortunate and thrilled to play with the likes of Jack Nicklaus, Tom Weiskopf and Larry Mize, to name a few, however; his biggest thrill was when he was paired with his all-time favorite professional, Arnold Palmer. And he gave all of them a run for their money!

Giving of his time and service to others was an important belief and commitment to John Lewis. He coached little league baseball when his children were younger. He taught Sunday school at First Lutheran Church for many years and served on committees for the Lutheran church, the Temple Country Club, the Lumberman’s Association and Wildflower County Club. He carried a smile wherever he went and never met a stranger. He always said he lived a great life and loved so many. He wished the same for others. His values and Christian beliefs will be remembered by those he leaves behind.

He was a loving and devoted husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather and friend and leaves behind his legacy of his children, Julie, John Jr and Jackie, his grandchildren John Harlan III (Carissa), Christopher Harlan (Kim), Andrew Harlan, McKenzie Ralston Fleming (Doak) and McKenna Ralston Brumfield (Justin), his great-grandchildren Rhett Harlan, Brenna Harlan, Haylee Harlan and Rinlee Fleming as well as several nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his beautiful wife Alice, his parents, a brother Frank Harlan and his son Jay. Also left to cherish his memory are his amazing and wonderful caretakes who became part of the family. Sara Glenn, Priscilla Macedo and Jazmine Shores. Our family cannot thank them enough for being with Mr. John. They gave so much of their love and time. They were not only his hands and feet, but they spoke for him when he needed help, cared and comforted him and loved him so much. The family is forever grateful.

In lieu of flowers, the family wishes any memorial donations be made to First Lutheran Church of Temple. Scanio-Harper Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

FAMILY
Alice Persky Harlan, Wife (deceased)
Julie Doering Harlan, Daughter
John Lewis Harlan, Jr. (Susan), Son
Jackie Harlan Ralston (Jack), Daughter
Jay Harlan, Son (deceased)
John Harlan, III (Carissa), Grandchild
Christopher Harlan (Kim), Grandchild
Andrew Harlan, Grandchild
McKenzie Ralston Fleming (Doak), Grandchild
McKenna Ralston Brumfield (Justin), Grandchild
Rhett Harlan, Great Grandchild
Brenna Harlan, Great Grandchild
Haylee Harlan, Great Grandchild
Rinlee Fleming, Great Grandchild

Also left to cherish his memory are his amazing and wonderful caretakes who became part of the family. Sara Glenn, Priscilla Macedo and Jazmine Shores. Our family cannot thank them enough for being with Mr. John. They gave so much of their love and time. They were not only his hands and feet, but they spoke for him when he needed help, cared and comforted him and loved him so much. The family is forever grateful.

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