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Nell F. Harris, 96

FEBRUARY 19 – Nell Fitzpatrick Harris, 96, from Prince Edward County (Kingsville/Hampden-Sydney) died on Monday, February 16, 2009. Born in Buckingham County on May 10, 1912 she always maintained her roots to her native county and constantly returned there.

She spent many hours roaming the “Buckingham” hills with usually at least two English setters. She was highly independent and her “true grit” pioneer spirit was partially due to the self-reliant struggle in her early years on the family farm in Buckingham.

She married James E. “Tigger” Harris and together they ran the Hampden-Sydney Esso Service Station, very much resembling a Walton setting when Nell entered the scene from the 1930's until Tigger's death in 1955. Nell maintained her Kingsville property and raised her children there following Tigger's death. Her yard and grounds, which she diligently worked on until age 90 were her pride and joy.

She is survived by her son, James E. Harris Jr. and wife, Caryl Shepard Harris of Chesterfield County; son-in-law, Robert Brosio of S. Pasadena, CA; grandchildren, Hilaire and Serena Brosio, both of CA, James E. (Jeb) Harris, III and wife, Amalia of VT and Julie Zebrowski and husband, Brett of CA; great-grandchildren, Metellus Harris (named after Nell's brother, who lived to be age 94 and was a well known out-doorsman in Buckingham Co.) and Brett and Austin Zebrowski. Her daughter, Anne Landon Brosio, preceded her in death by only hours.

Divine providence had to have a hand in the two passings especially with no humanly transmitted information of the other one dying. Anne was in constant touch about Nell's welfare until she died prior to Nell.

She was immensely interested in the military and National Defense and retired after a career with Selective Service. She belonged to both the UDC and the DAR. She was a long-time member of Hampden-Sydney College Presbyterian Church. She returned to Longwood College at age 44, when Tigger died, and completed business courses before beginning her career with Selective Service.

Her parting words, before she had extreme difficulty talking due to progressive dementia, were “We did alright, didn't we?” A truer statement was never issued to those who knew Nell's “fiery” determination, high morals, and work ethics in the Farmville area community.

Graveside services will be held at Westview Cemetery in Farmville at 2 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 21.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Prince Edward Co. Rescue Squad or the Chesterfield Co. (Bensley/ Bermuda) Rescue Squad.

Shorter Funeral Home, Farmville, is serving the family.