Steven Ray Harless
by Whitley Clifton | June 5, 2019 2:36 pm
Captain Steven Ray Harless of Palm Beach, Florida and Statesboro passed away unexpectedly on May 28, 2019 of cardiac arrest. He was born September 7, 1952 in Alexandria, Virginia into a U.S. Coast Guard family. His family lived in many places, and he attended high school in Coconut Grove, Florida before attending and graduating from Stetson University in Deland, Florida, where he met his wife, Caroline Otwell. They married immediately upon graduation. Later, he completed post-graduate work at both Georgia State University and Georgia Southern University. After passing the CPA exam, he went to work for Price Waterhouse in Atlanta. In 1986, he founded Harless & Associates in the Buckhead area of Atlanta. Then, in 1990, he and Caroline, a financial advisor, founded and added a financial services company, Peachtree Capital, to the mix. In the late 1990s, what began as their weekend hobby became Flat Creek Lodge, a hunting and fishing resort in Swainsboro, all developed and managed while working in their Atlanta businesses. Flat Creek Lodge garnered much attention and won many awards. Harless was particularly proud of his award-winning cheeses. After selling their Atlanta interests in 2015, the couple moved to Palm Beach to focus on their W. Palm Beach satellite firm established in 2011. Not one to sit still, Harless then pursued his many interests ranging from aviation, boating, various charities, and the arts. He was a member of the Knights Templar, York Rite, and Scottish Rite bodies, and the Shriner’s Alee Temple in Savannah. He always loved the water—so much that he and Caroline lived on a yacht in Palm Beach until his death.
Harless, an only child, was predeceased by his parents, Commander Edmond R. Harless (U.S. Coast Guard) and Joyce Blankenship Harless. He is survived by his wife and an array of aunts, uncles, and cousins in Virginia, West Virginia, and Ohio. His close circle of friends and clients will forever miss his friendship, loyalty, generosity, and his often outrageous sense of fun. He will also be remembered for his colorful and vintage attire.
Harless is to be cremated with a portion of his remains strewn at sea near Palm Beach and the remainder interred in a family plot in Statesboro. Close friends and family will celebrate his life private events in both cities. Donations in his honor can be made to the Palm Beach Symphony (www.palmbeachsymphony.org), Benzaiten Center for Creative Arts (www.benzaitencenter.org), and the American Humane (www.americanhumane.org).
Joiner-Anderson Funeral Home & Crematory of Statesboro is in charge of arrangements.