Harold David Norman was born Sep. 19, 1926, in Canton, and died peacefully of natural causes on May 22, 2020, at his home in Canton. He grew up in the Wallace Community with his parents, David and Hattie Norman, and his siblings Roy, Alvin, and Reedith Norman. He graduated from Canton High School in 1942. After serving in the US Navy and the Merchant Marines during World War II, he graduated from the University of Texas in Pharmacy with Honors in 1951.
He married Eloise Oliver on June 29, 1946. Mr. Norman was a pharmacist and owner of a landmark Canton business, the Eagle Drug Store for 30 years. Working side-by-side with his partner for life, Eloise, they provided a family-oriented, Christian atmosphere for Canton youth to meet and gather at the soda fountain. He provided employment and educational opportunities, college counseling, and excellent skills and training for area youth. He worked with the schools and taught tennis before there were public or school tennis courts.
A lifelong member of the First United Methodist Church, he was Chairman of the Board of Trustees and served with distinction on the Finance, Pastor-Parish Relations, and Building Committees. For over 10 years, he wrote a devotional for the weekly church bulletin and newsletter. Helping to strengthen God’s love in people’s lives, his writings were later published in a book of daily devotionals, See You At The Altar.
Giving a new meaning and purpose to his life after retirement, Mr. Norman used his passion for woodworking to serve the church and community. He worked tirelessly as a carpenter and craftsman on a daily basis to help construct the Methodist Church Family Life Center and perform church maintenance chores. He worked daily for countless hours as a carpenter and craftsman to help build the Canton Cherry Creek Park; provided a pro bono fix-it-service for people in need; made cheerful donations to the Society of St. Stephen, and gave his time and skill for the St. Therese Church Building project and the Sarah Norman Van Zandt County Library repair project.
For all his generosity in the little things he has done to help others, Mr. Norman was recognized in 2015 with the highest award bestowed upon a non-Mason by Castillian Lodge No. 141, Ancient Free and Accepted Masons, the Community Builder Award. Always leading by example, Mr. Norman’s life touched many others through his words, thoughts, and deeds. He loved a good joke and conversation. He accepted people based upon their inner strengths, not their external facades. He saw the good in everyone and brought out the good in everyone. He was truly a builder of a successful business and structures, but most of all, spent his life making relationships and the world a better place.
He is survived by his wife of 73 years, Eloise Norman; his son, David Norman and daughter-in-law, Dottie Norman; daughter, Elaine Walling and son-in-law, Mac Walling; and grandchildren Genevieve Norman, Rebecca Walling, and Nicholas Norman.
Anyone wishing to make a memorial donation may send it to the First United Methodist Church of Canton, Texas.