Tue | Jul 7, 2020

Sister Angella Harris a ‘gentle giant of a woman’

Published:Saturday | June 6, 2020 | 12:20 AMPaul Clarke/Gleaner Writer
Sister Angella Harris, former principal of Immaculate Conception High School, addressing students at the institution. Harris died of cancer last week. She was hailed as a ‘gentle giant of a woman’.
Sister Angella Harris, former principal of Immaculate Conception High School, addressing students at the institution. Harris died of cancer last week. She was hailed as a ‘gentle giant of a woman’.

Veteran educator and Franciscan Sister Angella Harris was yesterday hailed as a woman steeped in grace and humility as family, friends, and colleagues and several persons whose lives she touched joined in a memorial service to salute her.

Harris, 60, passed away last week from cancer.

The former principal of Immaculate Conception High in St Andrew and Mount Alvernia High in Montego Bay, St James, was remembered as a sports-loving enthusiast who exemplified simplicity.

Her 90-year-old mother, Cereta Harris, and sisters Carol-Cheryl and Myrtle, and niece Georgia looked on while others praised Harris for her diligence and care as a professional.

She was eulogised by school officials as “a gentle giant of a woman”.

“Sister Angella will be remembered for her astute mathematics skills. She was also a pinball champion and a woman who loved sports and who embodied simplicity,” one family member recalled.

Father Kingsley Asphal, who delivered the sermon, said: “Her life exemplified honour, and she was a beautiful person.”

Known as a strict disciplinarian who had compassion for those she led, Harris spent more than 25 years in the education system.

A graduate of St Hugh’s High, The University of the West Indies, Sam Sharpe Teachers’ College, and Central Connecticut State University, Harris taught at Hillel Academy for a year before her first stint at Immaculate Conception High as a teacher for five years.

She then moved to Mount Alvernia High, where she taught for 16 years, including her last 10 years as principal, before returning to Immaculate in September 2005 as principal.

paul.clarke@gleanerjm.com