Obituary: Claire Virginia Arthur Harris
Claire Virginia Arthur Harris died peacefully at home on the morning of July 17, 2015 with her family by her side. She was a lovely person with a ready smile and always enjoyed a good laugh. She was 95 years old.
Mrs. Harris was born on Sept. 26, 1919 in New York City to Clara (nee Sattig) and Graham Edward Arthur. The family moved to Darien when she was a young girl where she attended Royle School and graduated from Darien High School in 1936 at the age of 16.
Mrs. Harris went on to the McDowell School of Costume Design in New York where she received her diploma after studying dressmaking, millinery, and fashion design. A gifted seamstress, her first job was with Reader Mail Inc. in Manhattan where she created sewing patterns sold through newspapers nationwide. Mrs. Harris then worked for Conde Nast Publishing as an artist before marrying George Henry Harris in 1947.
Claire and George raised their family in Darien. Longtime members of Wee Burn Country Club, Mrs. Harris enjoyed summer days at the beach club with her family and was an excellent bowler in the Women’s League at Wee Burn. Later in life, she worked for the Rag Doll fabric store, and retired in 1989 from PHH Homequity in Wilton. She enjoyed photography, stamp collecting, crossword puzzles and was an avid gardener. She always loved her “little ‘ole Darien”.
Nicknamed “Dolly” as a girl, the name stayed with her all her life, affectionately used by friends and family alike. Dolly was a beloved mom, grandma, sister, aunt and friend.
Mrs. Harris was fortunate to have wonderful caregivers in her later years, especially Fe and Doreen, to whom we are most grateful.
She is survived by her two sons, Don (Nancy) of Darien and Geoffrey of Boulder, Colorado. Claire is also survived by her six grandsons: Liam (Yelena) of Brooklyn; Connor, Brendan and Lachlan of Darien; MacGregor of San Francisco and Walker of Boulder. She was predeceased by her husband George in 1976, her sister Constance Barnum and her grandson Graham Harris. A private memorial is planned for Saturday, August 29.
— by The Darien Times