Cover photo for Maxine Harris's Obituary
Maxine Harris Profile Photo

Maxine Harris

December 1, 1915 — April 25, 2009

Maxine Harris, 93, formerly of Washington, KS, passed away Saturday, April 25, 2009 at the Shawnee Mission Medical Center in Kansas City, KS. A funeral service was held at 2:00 p.m., Tuesday, April 28 at the United Methodist Church in Washington. The Rev. Randy Jellison-Knock officiated. Burial was in the Washington City Cemetery. Maxine was born December 1, 1915 in Meade, Kansas to John and Addie (Petefish) Haver. She graduated from the University of Kansas School of Pharmacy in 1938. She was united in marriage to Verne Harris ( a pharmacy school classmate) on September 29, 1940 in Great Bend, Kansas. Her first job after graduating from KU was in Kansas City for an allergy specialist. She then worked as a pharmacist for Gates Drug in Great Bend. After she and Verne were married they moved to Colby where Verne was a Pharmacist and she worked part time. When Verne enlisted in the Navy during WWII, she was an order taker for a wholesale drug company in Oakland, California. Later on she returned to Meade and worked as a pharmacist for the M & M Drug Store. This was the store in which she had worked as a soda-jerk and became interested in the pharmacy profession. Following the war years they lived in Cimmaron and Dodge City where Verne was employed as a pharmacist and she worked part time. On November 1, 1947 they purchased Smith Drug in Washington from Ora and Bess Smith . Around 1968 they expanded and purchased the “other” drug store in Washington, Brown Drug, from Cecil and Ann Staley. They combined the stores, moving everthing into the Brown building. In 1991 they sold the prescription merchandise to Lynn Schneider, who had started Health Mart. During their 43 years in business they saw many changes in the drug profession and in drug stores. One of the biggest change was the disappearance of the soda fountain. Maxine and Verne operated the soda fountain in their store until they locked the door for the last time. They had a lot of fun and developed friendships over a cup of coffee or a coke at the counter. Maxine was a member of the United Methodist Church, taught Sunday school, was a Girl Scout Leader and Cub Scout leader, for many years was a member of a Womens Federated Club and The Fidelia Literary Club, and was a 60+ year member of the PEO. She took painting lessons and learned to paint with oils, which became her hobby. She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Verne, on March 16, 1995; and a brother, Orville Haver. She is survived by a son, Max, and wife Robin; and two granddaughters, Alexandra and Vanessa Harris. A memorial fund has been designated to the Washington County Historical Society. Contributions may be sent in care of Ward Funeral Home. To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Maxine Harris, please visit our flower store.


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