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Bob Harris passes away ...

Bob Harris can easily be remembered as the nicest person you will ever meet …

Everyone who knew him will remember his rye smile, quick wit and helpful ways.  He was always kind, helpful, considerate and giving of himself & his time for others.

He was a dedicated volunteer umpire to a variety of Little League programs around our area.  He worked in both District 11 & 54 since the mid-1980’s and loved working with our area’s youth.

Slowed in recent years by knee issues, Bob last worked with NCOA during the 2009 season.  He served in leadership as a rating committee member for countless years and retired from the group on top of his game.

The last time our paths crossed, he remarked he might be able to get back into high school umpiring after knee replacement surgeries.

Bob’s talented life was taken from us over the weekend after a caring and generous existence.  

Randy Parker once wrote a piece that characterized Bob Harris & I’d like to share it here ...

Funeral services ...
Here are the current plans for Bob's services ...  

The service is planned for next Friday 1/18

The church is St. Patricks  3109 Sacramento St, Placerville
Rosary is at 10:30am at the Church
Service is 11:00am at the Church
Their will be a procession to the Crypt (Bob is being cremated) at Chapel of the Pines 2855 Cold Springs Rd, Placerville
A reception will be held back at the Church at 1:00pm

Unity in Adversity 06/22/01 by Randy Parker

The following item was written by Randy Parker, a baseball umpire from Auburn, Calif. Though written about a baseball game, the lessons Parker learned that day from a cherished veteran apply to all sports at all levels.

Standing together. If I live to be 1000, I will always remember my first Big League game at James Field. My partner was Bob Harris. We worked a doubleheader on a typically hot summer Sunday in Auburn.

I was terrible and I knew it! I made a lot of rookie mistakes throughout both games. My timing was so quick on one pitch that I rang up a strike right before the batter hit it for a double! On another close pitch, I yelled out "BALL" very loudly as I raised my right hand signaling strike! Squirming out of that situation was quite amusing and Harris an I still get a good laugh reminiscing. My game on the bases was not much better, either. I’m sure that I only kicked about five or six calls. Fortunately, I only had about seven or eight close ones. I think you get the picture.

After the game, I was so sure that Bob was going to criticize me for my many mistakes that I tried to sneak out of the park very quickly and quietly after the game. After all, I already knew how terrible I was. I certainly did not need him to rub it in!

He was quick. He caught up with me and he knew that I knew that we were supposed to do a post-game critique, so, I was stuck! I was about to raked over the coals. After all, he was a 20-plus year Little League baseball umpire. As far as I knew, he was probably the greatest Big League umpire in all of California. After all, his game did go as smooth as silk, especially in comparison. I was in way over my head anyway! I was certain that he was about to tell me that some umpires should probably stay in the Senior League or maybe even lower (much lower) for, well, perhaps their entire careers.

I braced for the worst. I’ll never forget his first words. He asked me, "What do you think I could do to improve?" After I picked myself up off the ground, I asked him to repeat his question and he said it again. "What do you think I could do to improve?" I was speechless! How could he be asking me a question like that? What was I supposed to say? I was so focused on my own insecurities and inabilities that …

He went on to compliment me on things that I did well. He taught me how to sandwich criticism. I’m sure he must have criticized something I had done, but to this day, the only thing I can remember about that post-game critique is how I felt! I felt proud that he acknowledged the few things I did right! I felt happy that Bob believed that I was worth helping. Most importantly, though, I felt honored that someone whom I held in such high regard would ask me to critique him. Bob Harris taught me how to be a partner that afternoon.

He could have ripped me up one side and down the other. He could have confirmed my suspicions that I needed many, many more years in the lower levels. Instead, Bob chose to be humble. He chose to be a good-finder. He chose to lift me up. He chose to remember that we had just finished participating in a game! Finally, he carefully, yet surreptitiously, chose to give me my first "brotherhood of officials" lesson.

I dream of the day when all involved in sports officiating will teach, preach and most importantly, be a shining example of the "brotherhood of officials." Unfortunately, the game is not designed to provide official recognition for a job well done. Therefore, it becomes our duty to stand together, on and off the field, regardless of our personal views. Umpires must enjoy "unity in adversity."

Bob Harris Left too Early

I will always be proud to have known Bob Harris for over 40 years starting on the Shasta Trinity National Forest in 1970 where we both worked, and to share the love we both had for Little League Baseball for almost 30 years after renewing our friendship in 1978 working in District 54/11.   I was proud to wear Bob's Little League Number (#19) during the 2010 Little League World Series because my number had already been taken.   Bob said he was proud for me to wear it because that was the only way he was ever going to get on the World Series Fields.   Well Bob you made it and you got to be there to support me but their is one rule that you violated and that was Little League Rule 7.13 - Leaving Early.   So Bob,  know that every time I throw the red flag in the coming seasons, I will never forget you.    God Rest Your Soul "Old Timber" (the nickname he always called me)


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