In Memory of






Obituary for Walter Benjamin "Benny" Harris Jr.

Walter Benjamin “Benny” Harris Jr., 84, of Roanoke, Va., passed away peacefully on Thursday, October 26, 2023, while sitting outside on the beautiful fall evening.

He is survived by wife, Vivianne Proffitt Harris; children, Debra Harris (Rahsaan) and Alan Sowder (Patricia); grandchildren, Chris Sowder (Sadonna), Allison Clary (Stephen), and Aaron Boush; great-grandchildren, Scott Sowder and Arlo Benjamin Clary; many nephews; and a niece.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Walter B. Harris Sr. and Alma Harris, and sisters, Elizabeth Nester, Joann Taylor, and Nancy Hawley.

Benny married Vivianne on July 6, 1972, and they were married for 51 years. He was born in Vinton, Virginia on February 14, 1939, and graduated from William Byrd High School. He retired as a Lab Technician from Mohawk Tire (Yokohama) after 30 years of service and was an original signer of the Local 1023 union charter. He enjoyed camping, dogs, the Redskins and Nationals, racing, walking, and spending time with his family. He was actively involved with Raleigh Court United Methodist Church.

The family wishes to thank a special caregiver, Patti Huntington for her love and compassion.

A Celebration of Life will be held at 2 p.m. on Wednesday, November 1, 2023, at Oakey’s South Chapel. Interment will follow at Blue Ridge Memorial Gardens. The family will receive friends from 6 until 8 p.m. on Tuesday, October 31, 2023, at Oakey’s South Chapel.

Memorial donations may be given to Angels of Assisi. Online condolences may be shared with the family at

Arrangements by Oakey’s Funeral Service – South Chapel, Roanoke, VA (540) 989-3131.