Yong Hoe Harris

April 10, 1942 ~ March 7, 2019 (age 76)


Yong Harris was an extraordinarily exceptional woman. She was a dedicated and committed wife to the only man she ever loved. A mother whose love knew absolutely no boundaries, and a proud grandmother who loved her grandchildren like she just could not love them enough. And to top it all off, she loved our husbands just like she loved us, with all their wonderfulness and faults.

Our mother Ku Yong Hui was born in Boryeong, South Korea on April 10, 1942. She was the third child to Ku Hee So and Yi Kyung Soon. Her father passed away shortly after her brother was born and young Yong began helping her family survive life in Korea without a father. Not only did she have a list of chores to do around the home, but she was also responsible for taking her brother to and from school. Taking her brother to school allowed her to also attend school. She did not mind putting him on her back every day because that meant she was going to learn, too. She viewed this as an opportunity, not a hardship.

However, this was not to last for long. By middle school, she was no longer allowed to attend school and was sent away by her uncle to work as a servant for a wealthy family. She cared for their young and elderly. She washed their clothes, cooked their meals, cleaned their house and did their laundry in a river, scrubbing clothes on a rock. These were hard and depressing times for her.

A neighbor saw her working one day and told her she did not have to work like this. She helped my mother escape and secure a job with a pharmaceutical company. Soon, she was able to send her mother most of her earnings and bring her brother to live with her. This was also the time that she would meet the one and only man she ever loved, Leon Harris.

After a period of dating, they married and began a family. Soon after their first daughter Patricia was born, Leon was sent to Vietnam. Though these times were troubling, she never lost hope that they would be reunited again, and they were. Before being sent back to the United States, my mother gave birth to their second child, Beatrice.

My father was excited to bring his family back to his country. Understanding the difficulties of living in a foreign land, he was diligent to make the transition easier for my mother. He taught her how to speak English and daily helped her study to become an American citizen. In 1973, my mother was sworn in as an American citizen. She was so proud of this moment and was forever grateful to my father for believing in her and helping make this happen.

She followed my father from duty station to duty station, always adapting to meet our needs and the needs of my father. She always made our home feel welcoming and warm. With mom, we always felt safe and loved, even when each of us did not always live up to what she believed about us. That is just one of the things we will all miss about her.

But she felt her greatest accomplishment was being a grandmother. I remember when I had Nehemiah, her first grandson. I knew my mother loved me, but I could not and still cannot explain how much she loved him. It was like she gave birth to him instead of me. That kind of love is inexplicable. Soon Sydney was born and then Dakoda. Ten years later, my sister gave her Harris, our baby. She loved each one with the same kind of love, again inexplicable. For this reason, we are all a very close-knit family.

Yong was the hub of our family, our center.

She didn’t follow trends (though she was quite fashionable) or friends. She never needed anyone to tell her she was doing a great job or thank her for a job well done. She found the greatest pleasure in making others happy. She always did what she felt was right for us, all of us. She truly put us first. From her, wehave all learned how to love with no boundaries.

Yong was a person of perseverance. She taught us to compromise instead of undermining, to accept and not disqualify, to encourage and not dissuade, to hope and not give up, forgive and not retaliate. But most importantly, to love and not hate.

She exuded the love of God, the unselfishness of God.Though she had one man on this Earth she truly loved, she kept God and His word at her center. How she mirrored our Heavenly Father!

I will never be able to express in words who my mother was. But I know this emptiness I feel, this hurt…we all know it. We know that she was ready to join Jesus and be reunited with my father. He came to her in a dream and told her to come. She got a glimpse of heaven and didn’t want to come back, so we had to let her go.

Mommy, we will miss you more than we can ever say, and we know that you are here with us. We love you.

Joining her husband Leon Harris in heaven, Yong is survived by her two daughters and their husbands, Eric and Patricia Chastain and Sean and Beatrice Clark and her four grandchildren, Nehemiah, Sydney and Dakoda Chastain and Harris Clark.

Please join us to celebrate Mrs. Harris’s life at Heritage Funeral Home, Harker Heights on Wednesday from 7:30P – 9:30P. Funeral Services will be held at Grace Christian Center on Thursday at 11:00A. Interment will follow at Killeen Memorial Park, Lake Rd.


Wednesday, March 13, 2019
7:30 PM - 9:30 PM

Heritage Funeral Home
425 E. Central Texas Expwy
Harker Heights, TX 76548

Funeral Service

Thursday, March 14, 2019
11:00 AM

Grace Christian Center
1401 E. Elms Rd
Killeen, TX 76542

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Yong Hoe Harris, please visit our floral store.


You can still show your support by sending flowers directly to the family, or by planting a memorial tree in the memory of Yong Hoe Harris
© 2022 Killeen Memorial Funeral Home. All Rights Reserved. Funeral Home website by CFS & TA | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Accessibility