In Memory of

Paula Harrison

November 20, 1944 - February 4, 2024


Paula Jean Harrison, 79 of Lee’s Summit MO, passed away February 4, 2024, at KU Hospital, Kansas City KS.  She was born in the St. Joseph Hospital, Kansas City MO on November 20, 1944 to Eugene and Neva Harrison.  When in trouble her parents called her ‘Paula Jean’.  To family members she was known as ‘Jeanie’ and her friends knew her as ‘Paula’.  She graduated from Raytown High School in 1962.  After graduation she went to work at the Federal Aviation Agency (FAA) on the Richards Gebaur Air Force Base in Grandview MO.  In 1965 she was involved in a car accident that left her a paraplegic.  Paula spent nearly a full year in rehab and recovery all the while never feeling sorry for herself and maintaining a positive attitude about her condition.  She maintained that positivity and was a strong and independent woman for the remainder of her time on earth.  In 1968 she changed jobs and began working for the Social Security Administration.  She received many awards while at SSA, one being the highest award, The Commissioner’s Citation.  She retired from the Federal government in 1995 after 33 years of service.  In her younger years, she loved to knit.  After retirement she began making handmade baskets and belonged to the Missouri Basket Guild.  She went to many basket conventions in the U.S. teaching basket classes and met some lifelong friends.  Eventually, basket making took a toll on her wrists and hands and she decided she needed a new hobby.  She found paper crafting fit that need.  She continued to enjoy making cards and buying crafting supplies until her death.  In 2015 Paula sold her home in Raytown and moved to the John Knox Village in Lee’s Summit MO in their independent living facility.  She remained there until her death.

Paula is preceded in death by her parents.  Survivors include brother, Randy Harrison Sr, (Jackie); Mary Lou Wade, her lifelong friend; and many nieces and nephews.   Paula will be remembered for her positive attitude and her strong independence.  She was a lover of all dogs.  She will be missed by her family and friends.

Services will take place Friday, February 16, 2024.  Visitation will be from 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m., with the funeral service starting at 11:00a.m.  Paula was an organ donor and chose to be cremated.  The burial will be held at the Brooking Cemetery, Raytown MO.

In lieu of flowers, family suggests donations to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) or the KC Pet Project.

Arrangements by Langsford Funeral Home, 115 SW 3rd Street, Lee’s Summit, MO 64063


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Paula was a fun friend with a great sense of humor! We enjoyed lunching and dumpster diving, her term for going to thrift stores. She was very kind to let Basket Buddies, a local basket weaving guild, meet at her house in Raytown when we needed a place. And she was generous in sharing her weaving supplies and patterns with us. She was an excellent teacher and supporter of the art of basket weaving. We will all miss her.

Paula, you will be ever remembered by the basket community as a shining light with your positive outlook on life and your never ending joy and happiness. I am glad you are at peace.

Paula was full of wisdom, sound advice speckled with her incredible sense of humor. She belonged to our national group of basketmaking teachers, called Woebies. When you belong to this group your Woes will be Gone. She was the total example of this group. She helped each of us in her own special way. I hope you are enjoying your freedom to walk and run again.

You were an admirable lady. We were proud to know you. Am sorry you didn’t get to come back to your house as you had wanted. You will be remembered for your courage, humor and beautiful outlook. Bless you.

All of us in the basket community, particularly our Woebie group had the privilege of enjoying her laughter and love and at basket conventions our treat to be able to make sure she got to go where she wanted, nice to give her a break when we had a chance to push her wheelchair. She spread her joy and we are better for knowing her

I worked with Paula Jean Harrison for a few years of the Social Security Administration. I later moved to two other sections of Social Security where I later retired. I knew her as Paula. She was a strong woman with a positive attitude regardless of her condition. I pray for the family, the Lord will give you peace.

In the wake of our friend Paula’s departure, a profound sense of loss lingers, for we shared an incredible 50-year friendship filled with countless memories.
Despite our lack of crafting skills and my own struggles in grade school art, Paula and I found joy in simpler pleasures, bonding over shared meals, card games, and the thrill of gambling.
Paula possessed a unique ability to uplift those around her; in her presence, self-pity became an alien emotion, and her unwavering positivity influenced my perspective on life’s challenges.
As we bid farewell, we fondly imagine Paula in a heavenly realm, surrounded by her favorite slot machines, their reels spinning in perpetual luck as she continues to revel in the joy of winning.
Though she may be physically absent, the echoes of our shared laughter and the warmth of her spirit endure, reminding us that true friendships, built on shared experiences and resilience, transcend the boundaries of this earthly existence.

I met Paula when we were both working for the Social Security Administration. It was my honor to have known her.


Friday, February 16, 2024
10:00 AM to 11:00 AM
Langsford Funeral Home
115 SW 3rd St
Lee’s Summit, MO 64063


Friday, February 16, 2024
11:00 AM
Langsford Funeral Home
115 SW 3rd St
Lee’s Summit, MO 64063