Robert J. Harrington Sr., 90, of Sheridan, died Sunday morning (Feb. 6, 2022) at Buffalo General Hospital following a brief illness.
He was born Jan. 15, 1932, in Dunkirk, the son of the late Austin and Lamar (Smith) Harrington.
A lifelong Dunkirk resident, Robert was a graduate of Dunkirk High School, class of 1949. He was also a graduate of Commercial Art from ICS.
He owned Harrington Signs, a local sign shop and lettering business in Dunkirk, which he ran with his wife for 50 years.
He was a professional artist for over 50 years. Theresa Schober, his art teacher at Dunkirk High School, was the first to teach him about technique and perspective. He also studied privately with Randall Grimm, an art director for many major Buffalo advertising agencies, and with John Yerger, a noted Buffalo realism artist, juror and art critic.
He was a member of several artists’ organizations. His work was showcased in dozens of gallery shows, private collections, and exhibits. He received numerous awards in watercolor and oils from various organizations. He sold over 1,000 of his paintings. He was featured in an article in “Manhattan Arts Magazine,” where the reporter raved, “To our delight, Bob Harrington stirs our visceral memories associated with the smells, sights and sounds of country life.” His paintings were on exhibit in Cooperstown, N.Y., as part of the 77th & 78th Annual National Juried Art Exhibition.
He served in the U.S. Navy from 1949-53, by patrolling the coast off of Virginia during the Korean War and was honorably discharged.
Survivors include three children; Deborah (Loni) Finley of Hemingford, Neb., Cheri (Lonnie) Crowell of Dunkirk, and Robert J. (Kelley) Harrington of Sheridan; nine grandchildren: Teddy Robb, Jerome Robb, Bob (Brenda) Robb, Jeremiah Robb, Ashley (Matthew) Smith, Alicia (Andrew) Schober, Alex (Elena) Crowell, Austin Harrington, and Garrett (Alyssia) Crowell; 10 great-grandchildren, two great-great-grandchildren, and several nieces and nephews.
Besides his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife, Elizabeth “Betty” (Sherman) Harrington, who died May 16, 2006.
A celebration of life will be held at a later date. A private burial was in Forest Hill Cemetery, Fredonia.
Arrangements were by the McGraw-Kowal Funeral Home.