Harold was born to Walker and Gladys Leonard of Skaneateles, where he lived most of his life. He graduated Skaneateles High School in 1946, earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry from the University of Rochester in 1950, and a Master’s degree from Syracuse University.
His introduction to teaching science and technology came during the Korean Conflict when he was selected to be an instructor in the Ground Radar School at Keesler AFB in Biloxi, Mississippi. After the service and a year teaching high school science, he transitioned to college level instruction. He joined the faculty of Cayuga Community College (Auburn Community College) in 1956 and served as a full-time professor for over 40 years.
His hobbies were as wide as his intellectual curiosity. Camping, sailing, gardening, radio-controlled model boats, bird-watching and music were all a vital part of his life. His favorite activity however was fishing, and he loved nothing more than being on the lake catching perch, bass, salmon and especially trout. He served as a ranger naturalist for the National Parks Service in Glacier National Park for two summers, volunteered for the Boy Scouts, and led family camping expeditions every summer. He was an active member of both the Skaneateles and Auburn Community Bands, and could be found most summer Friday nights in the Gazebo at the end of the lake in the “horn” section. He was particularly proud of giving back to the community, and volunteered regularly at Baltimore Woods, the MOST in Syracuse and for the Skaneateles historical society at the Creamery.
Calling hours will be held at 1:00 pm on Saturday, January 11th at the Skaneateles Methodist Church, with a memorial service at 2:00 pm. Contributions in lieu of flowers can be made to Baltimore Woods Nature Center.
To send condolences, visit robertdgrayfuneralhome.com.