Bernard Harris

Obituary of Bernard George Harris

July 9, 1927 – London, England

March 17, 2024 – Calgary, Alberta


Bernard George Harris, beloved husband of Barbara (nee Brunner), of Calgary, AB, passed away on Sunday, March 17, 2024, at the age of 96 years.


Bernard (Bernie) was born in London, England, on July 9, 1927; and raised in the Warwickshire area of the English Midlands, in the towns of Barford and Stoneleigh. He joined the British Navy after finishing school and patrolled the Mediterranean Sea on reconnaissance and supply missions after the war ended. He was stationed for a period of time in Malta, and this led to a lifelong love of the country and its people.


He came to Canada in the early 1950s where he met his future bride, Barbara Irene Brunner, here in Calgary; they married in 1954. Bernie trained as an electrician and worked for the Calgary School Board for many years. Later, he started his own heating and air-conditioning company, Harris Control Service. He never lost his love of the sea or naval life and was an active member of the Canadian Naval Reserve his entire life. He also participated in many naval training exercises aboard a variety of Canadian Navy ships throughout his lifetime.


In retirement, Bernie and Barbara travelled extensively to many countries. They were also very active members of the Skrastins Outdoor Club and the CBEREA hiking group. Bernie developed a passion for both hiking and X-country skiing in AB’s mountains and was also an avid cyclist with the Elbow Valley Cycle Club.


He is predeceased by his parents, Alfred and Elizabeth; and his sisters, Patricia Harris and Sheila Bestianich.


He is survived by his wife Barbara, daughter Susan Matsalla (Ron), sons, Steve (Christine) and Ian (Deirdre); grandchildren, Colin (Elysia), Eric (Claire), Justine Matsalla, and Renee Matsalla (Grant); and great-grandchildren, Tristan, Charlie, Scarlett, and Evie.


His legacy to us all is a lifetime of love, generosity, good humour, gentleness of spirit, and unfailing kindness. While we mourn his loss, we will always cherish his memory.


A Celebration of Bernie’s Life will be held sometime this summer for family and friends.


Condolences, memories, and photos may be shared and viewed with Bernard’s family here.


In living memory of Bernard Harris, a tree will be planted in the Ann & Sandy Cross Conservation Area by McInnis & Holloway Funeral Homes, Crowfoot, 82 Crowfoot Circle NW, Calgary, AB T3G 2T3, Telephone: 403-241-0044.

Share Your Memory of