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IN MEMORIAM – Clark R. Harmon, October 18, 1942 - April 12, 2007
Funeral services for Clark R. Harmon of Amity were held Thursday, April 19, 2007 in the Macy & Son Funeral chapel, 135 NE Evans St, in McMinnville, OR. The Rev. Bernard Turner officiated. Interment was conducted in the Hopewell Cemetery. Several chess players were the pallbearers: Peter Prochaska, Mike Morris, Karl Sch., Neil Dale and Carl Haessler. Other chess players in attendance included Russell Miller, John Hatala, Bob Ferguson and Nick Raptis.
Mr. Harmon died of cancer on Thursday, April 12, 2007, at his home. He was 64.
Born in Portland on Oct. 18, 1942, he was the son of Edwin and L. Rose (Parker) Harmon. He grew up in Portland, graduating from Clackamas High School. He attended Portland State University, where he earned an accounting degree.
He lived in Seattle for a short time, working for Boeing, then returned to Portland to work for Freightliner. He later established his own certified public accountant practice in Olympia. In 1989, he went into the business of manufacturing and selling greenhouses.
He married Sherry Correla on March 30, 1991, in Vancouver, Wash. He moved to McMinnville in 1991 and Amity in 1996.
A master chess player, he was a 10-time winner of the state chess championship. He belonged to the Portland Chess Club and U.S. Chess Federation.
He also enjoyed horses, horse camping at the beach and reading.
"He was an easygoing, mild-mannered man who was very non-judgmental and took everyone at face value," his family said.
In addition to his wife, Mr. Harmon is survived by two sons, Calvin of McMinnville and Charles of Los Angeles; a daughter, Christina Schwartz of Amity; a sister, Susan Prothero of Corvallis; and three grandchildren.
Contributions may be made to the Portland Chess Club, care of Macy & Son Funeral Directors, 135 N.E. Evans St., McMinnville, OR 97128.
Thanks to IM John Donaldson for finding this game in Chess Life.
Browne, Walter - Harmon, Clark, Western States Open, Reno, NV 27.10.1999
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e5 3.dxe5 Ng4 4.Nf3 Bc5 5.e3 Nc6 6.Nc3 0-0 7.Be2 Re8 8.0-0 Ncxe5 9.Nd4 Nf6 10.b3 d5 11.cxd5 Nxd5 12.Nxd5 Qxd5 13.Bb2 Qe4 14.Kh1 Qh4 15.Nf3 Nxf3 16.Bxf3 Bd6 17.g3 Qe7 18.Bg2 c6 19.e4 f6 20.f4 Be6 21.Qc2 Rac8 22.Rad1 c5 23.e5 fxe5 24.Be4 c4 25.Bxh7+ Kh8 26.Bg6 Bg4 27.Rde1 cxb3 28.Qxb3 Rf8 29.fxe5 Bb4 30.Rb1 Be2 31.Qe3 Bxf1 32.e6 Rf6 33.Bxf6 Qxf6 34.Be4 Bc5 35.Qb3 Qf2 0-1
Information submitted by Clay Kelleher (Portland, OR)
Clark Harmon was heavily involved in chess organization in the Northwest. In 1965, while living in Renton, he served as President of the Washington Chess Federation. By 1967 he had returned to Portland and helped organize the Oregon Chess Federation and served as its first President. That same year Clark worked with the Oregon Museum of Science & Industry (OMSI) to start a series of Oregon scholastic chess tournaments that has been an annual event ever since, currently administered by Chess For Success.
Clark Harmon had excellent skills as a blindfold chess player. Deane Moore related to me that as a teenager Clark once competently played a series of 5-minute games with the board out of sight against other players close to his ability. (A referee moved Clark's pieces but Clark punched the clock.)
In the late 1970's Clark had been invited to conduct a blindfold simultaneous exhibition at a Portland area mall. He wasn't sure whether to accept, so he wanted to practice. He had the Portland State University Chess Club invite six players whose average rating was about 1800-1900 to a private blindfold simul.
We tried to make it as difficult for him as possible. I observed two side-by-side games in which his opponents were playing nearly the same opening against him, but different enough to try to confuse him. In my game, I started with a book opening, then deliberately threw in some non-thematic moves. Clark was clearly struggling, and on one occasion needed to be refreshed on the position in one of the games. Nevertheless his play remained steady and after 3 or 4 hours and quite a few cigarettes he finished with three wins, a draw, and two losses.
We all discussed it afterwards. Clark decided then that he would NOT try to repeat the performance in public, because he found the effort to be exhausting. Nevertheless, given that most simultaneous exhibitions include a preponderance of weak opponents, we all considered Clark's result to be very impressive.
Tribute to Clark Harmon from Vancouver, BC, Canada (PDF file).