Harkins_John Obit

John Keith Harkins

February 5, 1946 - January 1, 2021

Fear not and please don't weep over me for God brings good news: "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten son for whosoever believeth in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life" (John 3:16). If God can forgive a wretch like me, then He can forgive anyone.  I believe and trust in the Lord and believe that I will be reunited with Him and my family in heaven.  Since we are on this earth for only a little while, live your life for Him because everything else is really meaningless.

John Keith Harkins went to the Lord on January 1, 2021. He was born in Taylor, Texas on February 5, 1946 to Milford David Harkins and Ruby Margaret (Swenson) Harkins. John was raised in San Antonio, Texas where he graduated from Thomas Edison High School. At the age of 12, he was baptized in the name of the Lord at Woodlawn Christian Church. Upon graduation in 1964, he took a summer job as a Bible salesman for Southwestern Publishing Company in Nashville, Tennessee. John always said this summer experience accelerated his life’s knowledge of dealing with people while learning more about faith, character and persistence.

He entered The University of Texas at Austin to study Mathematics and Computer Science and married Joanna Sue Hess in 1966. Upon graduation from U.T. in 1968, the family with their first son, John Jr, moved to Tustin, California to work for Rockwell-Autonetics. The family returned to Austin in 1970 to work for Texas Instruments. In 1971, the family had their second son, Jeffrey. In 1984, the family moved to Burke, Virginia, where John represented TI with the Department of Defense. He left TI in 1999 to work in two startup companies before working for NASA-JSC as Principal Systems Engineer for the International Space Station until 2016. John served on the Board of Directors of the Dallas Military Ball and volunteered his time as the STEM Advisor and mentor to several Dallas area schools, Boy and Girl Scouts and non-profits. He was a professor of engineering the past two fall semesters at U.T. Arlington. He was a founding member of Reformed Church at Plano and Forest Grove Christian Church in Lucas, Texas.

John is survived by his wife of 54 years, Joanna Harkins of Fairview, Texas; son, John Harkins Jr. and daughter-in-law, Stephanie Harkins and grandchildren, Tyson and Jason of Friendswood, Texas; son, Jeffrey Harkins and daughter-in-law, Elizabeth Harkins and grandchildren, Hayes and William of Keller, Texas; sister, Lynda Martyn and  brother-in-law, Jay Martyn of Lake Highlands, Texas; brother-in-law, Tim Hess and sister-in-law, Gail Hess of Austin, Texas and brother-in-law David Hess and sister-in-law, Ava Hess of the Philippines; sister-in-law, Nancy Harkins of San Antonio, Texas and multiple nieces and  nephews. 

He was preceded in death by his parents and his older brother, David Ross Harkins of Comfort, Texas and half-brother, Sammy Ray of Lubbock, Texas.

"The Lord is my Shepard, I shall not want." (Psalm 23). And I give Him all the glory.  I love Him and all of you. Until we meet again.  May God bless you. Relax: "All is Well!"

A memorial service will be held at 2:00 p.m., Friday, July 22, 2022 at Turrentine-Jackson-Morrow Funeral Home Chapel, 2525 Central Expressway North, Allen, Texas 75013. The service will also be live streamed at TJMfuneral.com on John's obituary page by clicking on the following link: https://celebrationoflife.tv/blog/john-keith-harkins. After the service, the recorded live stream will be available for viewing at the same link location. 

Memorial contributions can be sent to Forest Grove Christian Church for Evangelism at 2542 Country Club Road, Lucas, Texas 75002 or to the STEM Program at the school of your choice. 

Memorials Would you like to say a few words? Click Here +

Went to high school with John but got more acquainted as we sold Bibles in Illinois the summer of 1964. Learned many lessons in life that summer and gained life long memories of John. Sorry to learn of his passing- wish we could have spent more times together.
Ronny Krueger, April 26, 2022 I did not know John very well or for very long. I met him while volunteering for a local high school. There was something about him that reminded me of my father; smart, articulate and simply put, caring. I am sorry for all his family members loss - may God be with all of you during this difficult time. It sounds like he lived an incredible life. What a blessing. Laura Flynn, February 10, 2021 I only met John a short while ago when I started attending Town Council meetings. John was always so encouraging to me and supportive of my efforts. Praying for you and your family. I’m sorry for your loss! I know John will be missed by many. Holly Parsons, January 25, 2021 John was a great mentor and guide in the time that I worked with him at Texas Instruments. He is one of those folks who gives unsparingly to his community. He will be truly missed. My prayers are with and for his family at this time. Alan Alan Johnson, January 18, 2021 I had the distinct pleasure of meeting John two years ago and his energy for making his community great was always apparent and genuine. God bless John and his family....my deepest condolences. Tony Mattei, January 15, 2021 There are so many good things we can say about John. He was so interesting and shared wisdom from God’s Word and from his life experiences. There is no doubt that he loved the Lord with all his heart and soul and mind and loved his neighbor as himself. John loved his wife and sons and extended family. He was an active and faithful member of the church and community. We miss him and it is still hard to believe he is gone, but we are thankful that we will see him again. John and Kathy Gase Kathy Gase, January 15, 2021 John was a great neighbor a great person and a good friend who had a lot of class about him. I enjoyed all the walks and conversation I had with him while walking the streets of our neighborhood. I kept trying to convince him to run for mayor in our little town, he would have been the perfect fit! Rest in peace my friend, we will walk together again another time! BRUCE AUDINO, January 12, 2021 Joanna so sorry for your lost, I remember the first encounter I had with John...it was at a council meeting I attended to speak with the council about flooding on my property and when I was finish and leaving the meeting John stopped me and spoke with me and said you need to run for council and the rest was history. Ever since that time John was always there for questions and guidance and was a amazing human being. I will miss him greatly, Thanks for your continued friendship and if you ever need anything we are here for you. Philip and Tammy D’Amico Philip D'Amico , January 12, 2021 We will remember John in many positive ways-with a big smile and a great sense of humor, always great with a story.” We send you comfort and prayers during this time. Bill and Ann Gustafson Oakes, January 11, 2021 Sincere condolences to the family. May your memories bring you comfort. With love and sadness, Cousin Jessica Jessica Harkins Shahin , January 10, 2021 Joanna, John Jr and Jeffrey and family: We are so saddened to learn of John's recent passing. He was always so kind and a fun guy to talk to at our various family get-togethers which weren't often enough. Our prayers are with you all during this very difficult time Jackie & John Tucker Belton, Tx Jackie Tucker, January 8, 2021 John was a very good man that loved his country and his county. I didn't know John long but he was very passionate in the things he pursued. Darrell Hale, January 7, 2021 Joanna, John was a valued member of our TI marketing team and a fun guy to work with. Patty and I wish you and the family our deepest sympathies at your loss. Sherel Horsley Sherel Horsley Horsley, January 6, 2021 We are so sorry for your loss and know that you are in our thoughts and prayers during this difficult time. Chieu and Qui Pham, January 5, 2021 Joanna, we are very sorry to hear of John’s passing. We will miss seeing him at Allen Cafe and the Town Council meetings. God bless and comfort you. Porter and Susan hull, January 5, 2021 I'm so sorry for your loss. John was a wonderful carrying man. Im so thankful that he was our friend. He always made us laugh with his quirky sense of humor. He is missed so much at Bill Smiths Cafe by us the staff and customers he had come to know. Debbie Hamm / Bill Smith, January 5, 2021 My deepest condolences to the family as John was a stand up guy. He will be severely missed around town and his work to better our community will never be forgotten. Cody Hooper, January 5, 2021 John touched so many lives within our community . We are grateful for his dedication and passion to improve Fairview for our families and our future generations. He fought for so many important issues that our community is faced with and had the facts, wisdom, and ability to communicate with our town leaders. He truly brought our community together. John's legacy will live forever in Fairview. I am personally honored to have known John. My family and I will pray for his wife, sons and family during this difficult time. Barbara Isaacs, January 5, 2021 To my dear friend in Plano and in life, our thoughts and prayers are with you all. We are so very sorry for your loss. Love, Pat and Greg Thompson Greg and Pat Thompson, January 5, 2021 He’s in a better place now William bowman , January 5, 2021 Joanna and Family- God works in mysterious ways, the majority of the time we don't understand these ways. I don't, but I have faith and you all must have faith in knowing that God's plans for John are only beginning. Have comfort that your loved one is on high looking down on you. Godspeed John, you will be missed. Kozlowski Family, January 5, 2021 You will surely be missed by all. You were an inspiration to many. God bless you. Our prayers are with your family. David Bowman, January 5, 2021