Oshawa mourns long-time councillor and “passionate” environmentalist Irv Harrell

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Published May 28, 2024 at 11:27 am

Irv Harrell
Irv Harrell 1931-2024

The City of Oshawa is mourning the passing of former city and regional councillor Irv Harrell, an Oshawa born-and-raised lover of the outdoors who died May 15 at the age of 92.

Harrell served on council from 1985 to 2000 and will be remembered for his service to his community, his love of nature, scouting and sports and for his passion for environmental conservation.

Harrell, who played semi-pro football, was a noted basketball player and an avid skier, chaired the Central Lake Ontario Conservation Authority for 15 years and the Oshawa Power & Utilities Corporation for a decade.

“The City of Oshawa extends its deepest condolences to the Harrell family,” said Mayor Dan Carter. “Irv truly cared about his community, nature and the environment. Thank you Irv for your service and numerous contributions to Oshawa.”

Harrell married Kathleen (Kay) Tink in 1954 and they raised three daughters together on a country lot on Harmony Road. His career journey carried him through a home heating business with his father and a stint at General Motors before landing at St. Mary’s Cement as the purchasing manager, where he launched his political career.

He was also an avid bird lover, outdoorsman and waterfowl hunter with his Labrador Retrievers and became an accomplished woodcarver, focusing on intricate birds and decoys, then moving on to larger projects including full sized totem poles.

The Harrells purchased a 67-acre farm outside of Tyrone where he spent two decades creating Hawk Ridge Farm, planting over 30,000 trees and creating a natural masterpiece of beauty and peace.

Harrell leaves behind Kay, his wife of 70 years, his three children and seven grandchildren.

The family will hold a private celebration of his life. Messages of condolence can be sent to www.mundellfuneralhome.com

Flags at City Hall were lowered to half-mast in memory of Irvine Harrell.

Oshawa Council 1985-88

Oshawa Council 1985-88. Irv Harrell is in the back row, third from left

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