Aces Nation mourns the passing of Harry Middleton '42

Back to News List | Posted on Mar 25th, 2009
Harry Middleton (center) with Jermaine Griffin (left) and Kobe Bryant at the 1996 State Title game in Hershey
The following is a recent note to the Lower Merion Basketball community from assistant coach Doug Young regarding the passing of Harry Middleton '42.
 
Dear Friends of Lower Merion Basketball,
 
It is with a heavy heart that I must inform you of the passing of Harry Middleton '42, a beloved member of the Lower Merion Basketball Family. Harry, an inaugural member of the Lower Merion Basketball Hall of Fame, helped lead the Aces to back-to-back state championship victories in 1941 & 1942. He was a first-team All-State selection and team captain in his senior season and went on to play college ball at Cornell University, where he was the first freshman ever to start for the Big Red.
 
Harry maintained close ties with the Lower Merion basketball program throughout his life. During the past two state title years - 1996 and 2006 - he returned to his alma mater to serve as honorary grand marshal of the championship parades. Last June, he participated in the first-ever Lower Merion Basketball Alumni Reunion and Hall of Fame Weekend, assisting on the event planning committee and captivating us with stories of his glory days on the hardwood. In the weeks leading up to the Reunion, Harry and his wife Betty invited me to their home in West Chester to sort through a treasure trove of scrapbooks, photo albums and memorabilia from Harry's LM days that he wanted to share at the big event. We talked hoops and life for hours, and though we came through LM a few years apart, there was certainly no generation gap when it came to our shared passion for Lower Merion Basketball. Harry was an "Ace" through and through.
 
Harry was born July 13, 1924, son of Harry Jr. and Mildred Middleton of Narberth. He was predeceased by his first wife Margaret and is survived by wife Betty, his four children from Margaret -- Harry IV, Rand, Jeffrey and Wendy -- eight grandchildren and two great-grandchildren as well as four stepchildren from his marriage with Betty. Harry served his country in WWII and the Korean War as a Lieutenant in the U.S. Marine Corps. He was President of Lighting Associates in Berwyn, PA from 1960-1995 and was a member of the Merion Golf Club, Waynesborough Country Club and Hersheys Mill Country Club.
 
The Middleton family will be holding a grave-side service for Harry this Saturday, March 28th at 12:30 PM at Valley Forge Gardens in King of Prussia, PA. The family has asked that donations in Harry's memory be directed to the Lower Merion Basketball Scholarship Fund, c/o the Lower Merion Athletic Office, 245 E. Montgomery Ave., Ardmore, PA 19003. The Middleton's home address is 234 Chatham Way, West Chester, PA 19380. The basketball program will honor Harry's memory next season and we will provide additional details when they become available.
 
Harry Middleton's endearing warmth, generous spirit and legacy of achievement will live on forever in Aces Nation. We will miss him greatly.
 
In friendship, 
Doug