Laura Nell Rogers Harrison could read long before she went to school. By the end of first grade she’d finished all of the second-grade books in the tiny rural school and was promoted to third grade at the age of six. Born the youngest of four children, her mother died when Laura was 18 months old. Her father, an alcoholic, moved the children from town to town, giving her a childhood of poverty, upheaval and loss. Throughout her childhood, her older sister and brothers looked out for her and loved her deeply. Her aunt and uncle often took her in and she learned the rewards of hard work and a job well done. She lived for a time in the Florida Baptist Children’s Home where she was delighted to learn to play the piano and make up a bed “just so”. Wherever she went, Laura Nell met women of faith who nurtured and encouraged her.
When offered a scholarship to college, a degree in Early Childhood Education was a natural fit. She was passionate about the lives of children, a keen observer of the natural world, and wanted her faith to make a difference in the world. At FSU, Laura Nell met and married Kenneth Harrison who was recently called to the ministry. Following FSU, the couple moved to the New Orleans Seminary where she became the head teacher of the seminary school.
In the years that followed, she taught in public schools and private schools, always putting her family and ministry first while touching the lives of children with love. She was generous in a quiet way, meeting the needs of those in her path with understanding and compassion. Missionaries, pastors, students and parishioners were welcome at her table and in her home. She poured herself into her two children, encouraging their talents and equipping them with values and faith. Her husband was blessed by her constant prayers as they served churches together throughout Florida and Alabama for 65 years.
Throughout her life, Laura Nell loved to read and expressed herself by writing poetry. Her insight and vision can be seen in her small book of poetry. After her ability to read and write had diminished, a little note was found in the top drawer of her bedside table at Chautauqua Nursing and Rehab Center. Laura Nell had written, “Lord bless those who are so kind to me here.”
Mrs. Harrison was preceded in death by her father and mother; two brothers, George Rogers and Wilborn Rogers; and one sister, Geraldine Bullard.
Mrs. Harrison is survived by her loving husband of 65 years, Reverend Kenneth Harrison; one son, David Kenneth Harrison and wife Michelle of DeFuniak Springs, Florida; one daughter, Lona Robinson and husband Nicholas Schuster of Pensacola, Florida; three grandchildren, Emily Harrison, Rhen Robinson of the United States Army, and Dalton Harrison.
A time of visitation will be held from 9:00 – 11:00 AM, Wednesday, May 9, 2018 at Clary-Glenn Funeral Home Chapel; 230 Park Avenue, DeFuniak Springs, Florida 32435.
Funeral services will be held at 11:00 AM, Wednesday, May 9, 2018 at Clary-Glenn Funeral Home Chapel, with Reverend Buddy Hood officiating.
Those serving as pallbearers will be David Adams, Nick Anderson, Robert Fountain, Harlan Harrison, Sonny Nolin, and Willie Tatman.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Florida Baptist Children’s Homes, at www.fbchomes.org
Burial will follow in the Pleasant Grove Baptist Church Cemetery.
You may go online to view obituaries, offer condolences, and sign guest book at www. clary-glenn.com.
Clary-Glenn Funeral Home & Crematory is entrusted with the arrangements.