Floria “Flo” Catherine Harris-Johnson of Riverhead died Oct. 28. She was 103.
She was born May 17, 1911, in Richmond Va. to Floyd Harris and Katie Harris-Hobson. From ages 13 to 18 she attended Rocky Mount private Catholic School. Ms Harris-Johnson later moved to New Jersey with her mother before moving to Riverhead with her mother and stepfather, Andrew Hobson.
Ms. Harris-Johnson was briefly married to David Fitzgerald, and the couple owned and operated a local bar and grill. She later moved to New York City, where she accepted domestic employment with Joseph Kennedy and his family. Ms. Harris-Johnson moved to Florida with the Kennedys briefly, before moving back north to help take care of new mothers and babies. Family said she traveled back and forth to Richmond Va. to help take care of her father, and after his death, she returned to Riverhead to work and help take care of her mother.
Ms. Harris-Johnson briefly served as a member of Friendship Baptist Church. She later became a long-standing member of the First Baptist Church, serving as a church clerk, and a member of the Willing Workers Club, Ladies’ Auxiliary and kitchen committee. Family members said she enjoyed working for the church, decorating and creating hors d’oeuvres for many special events. They said Ms. Harris-Johnson often referred to herself a “Child of God.”
She was predeceased by her brother, Stewart; her foster-brother, Luther Blare-Harris, and by her husband, Robert Johnson. She is survived by her brother’s four children, John Harris, Mary Hall, Dorothy Sillers and Carl Harris, as well as many other relatives and friends.
A service was held Nov. 1 at First Baptist Church in Riverhead, officiated by Paster Charles Coverdale. Interment took place at Washington Memorial Park in Mount Sinai.
Arrangements were handled by Seay Memorial Chapel in Riverhead.