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Kirke Noyes Harrington
October 23, 1934 ~ October 9, 2023 (age 88) 88 Years Old
Kirke Noyes Harrington passed peacefully in his sleep on October 9, 2023 at his University Retirement Community home in Davis, CA at the age of 88.
Born in Grand Ledge, Michigan on October 23, 1934 to Mildred and Edward Hale Harrington, Kirke’s first 5 years were spent on a farm near Paw Paw enjoying playing in the fields with his older brother and sister. The family moved to Charlotte in 1939, where Kirke attended Froebel, Hawthorne, and Charlotte High Schools.
Some of his most memorable summer jobs included building silos throughout lower Michigan with his older brother for The Michigan Silo Company where he decided he didn’t want to farm, working at Dow Chemical in Midland where he decided he didn’t want to become a chemist, and as a cook in exchange for meals at a college sorority where he decided he never wanted to cook again.
He attended Albion College in Albion, MI, earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Chemistry in 1956. He was an active member of Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity. While attending Albion, he met Phylis Van Weelden of Kalamazoo. They married in 1957 and together moved to Ann Arbor, where Kirke was in his second year of medical school at the University of Michigan. After Kirke’s graduation, they returned to Kalamazoo, where he completed his residency internship at Borgess Hospital.
In 1961, they drove across the country to Sonoma County, California, where Kirke had enlisted in the navy at Skaggs Island Naval Communications Station. This was a self-contained naval base engaged in a number of communications and intelligence-gathering functions where he served as medical officer. Their eldest son, Daniel, was born in Napa early during that time.
In 1964, they left Skaggs Island when Kirke joined three other physicians at Kaiser Permanente in Napa, where the couple made their home for the next 54 years. Their twin sons, Bradley and David were born during their first year residing in Napa.
When not focused on the very rewarding and challenging work of serving as a Primary Care Physician in Family Practice Medicine for countless patients and families in a career spanning 32 years, he helped raise and tutor three energetic sons, immensely enjoyed summer camping trips with the boys, family spring ski trips, summer trips to the beach, numerous memorable road trips and Florida and Hawaii vacations, building and flying radio-controlled airplanes and gliders with his eldest son, cheering on his sons in various sports, and watching football games with his youngest sons.
For decades, but particularly during retirement, the highlight of each year were summer vacations on the shore of Lake Michigan spent together with family, relatives, and friends throughout lower Michigan.
In August of 2018, Kirke and his wife moved into the University Retirement Community in Davis, CA to be closer to their two youngest sons, where he continued to enjoy swimming, walks in the courtyards, making journal entries, and trying to organize those piles on his desk and catch up on sleep.
As devoted and caring husband, dedicated and loving father, attentive and compassionate physician, and wonderful and cherished friend, Kirke Noyes Harrington touched the lives of many in this lifetime.
He is survived by three sons, Daniel Harrington of Palm Springs, CA, Bradley Harrington of Davis, CA, and David Harrington of Davis, CA, his brother Hale Harrington of Napa, as well as numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins.
Predeceased by Kirke are his wife, Phylis Jean Harrington of nearly 63 years, his parents Mildred Leoma and Edward Hale Harrington Sr, and his sisters Nancy Walker and Thelma Woods.
As an increasingly private person, he asked that no funeral or memorial services be held, and wished only a small, private family burial at Tulocay Cemetery in Napa.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks that any donations in his memory be made to one of his late wife’s favorite charities, the Hospice of Napa Valley, now Providence Community Health Foundation Napa Valley at https://communityhealthnapavalley.org