Harvey was born Monday, January 23, 1933 to Wilson and Gladys (Fisher) Kraft in Kitchener, Ontario. He was the youngest of six children: Leonard, Orville, Gordon, Harold, Eva and Harvey. The Kraft children went to public school in the Kitchener-Waterloo area and Harvey attended high school at Kitchener–Waterloo Collegiate & Vocational School, commonly known as KCI.
Wilson and Gladys raised their family on a farm. Harvey found work in a number of places, starting in a service station where one of his winter tasks was cleaning local business parking lots. As luck would have it one of Harvey’s customers was Carling. His payment? A case of beer a week! Included in those cases were bottle openers, whereby Harvey soon started collecting. Over the years Harvey collected 100’s of openers. Everyone one of course had a story behind it and he would gladly explain how it came to be in his possession. The service station introduced Harvey to the trades. He soon received his tickets in welding and sheet metal before finally becoming a millwright. He then moved on-ward to work for the Ball Brothers Ltd. off of Weber Street in Kitchener as a welder. Then he went to Rozell's on Victoria St. in Kitchener (beside "Jimmy's Lunch"), doing sheet metal and welding. Following this, Harvey moved to Doon Twines now called Canada Cordage in the maintenance department. Harvey also bartended at the local Armories over the years. He began this at a young age and kept it up, as it helped with his income.
While at “The Waterloo Show” (in other words, the movies!) Marjory Leona (Mickie) Clayfield was introduced to Harvey. The cost of a movie at that time? Well, $0.25 of course! The movie theatre was common ground for both Marjory and Harvey and they ran into each other there several more times. On Saturday, February 14, 1953 Mickie and Harvey were married by Marjory’s Uncle Clarence Hauser C.R. of St. Jerome’s College. Their witnesses were William Schumacher, Harvey’s brother-in-law, and Catherine (Kittie) Privatt. The nuptials took place at St. Louis Roman Catholic Church in Kitchener. The young couple soon moved in with Harvey’s parents on the farm. This was a one room house on a hill close to the main house at the bottom of the hill, with a pot-belly stove for cooking and you had to fetch the water from the well. In time they moved to Spadina St. in Kitchener before moving to Crestwood Ave. also in Kitchener, where all of the kids grew up. Harvey and Mickie welcomed six children; Chris (1953), Lee (1954), Mark (1957), Joy (1960), Danny (1962) and Parry (1965).
Harvey had a great sense of humour. He could also be stubborn and often lacked patience, especially when he was given the task of family enforcer. His kids well remember his head shake as Harvey would often simply shake his head and walk away. Harvey was also extremely helpful and always willing to help his wife and children when there was a need. One of his favourite saying was, “Oh Lord it’s hard to be humble, when you're perfect in every way" sung by Max Davis. Harvey would hum to it also. When Boy George (Culture Club) came out with "Karma Chameleon", he thought it was a girl singing, boy he had good laugh. However, Harvey’s biggest fault, though, was his loud snoring. (Poor fellow!) O ya, he also had a heavy right foot!
Another family passion was for camping. The Kraft family began with a twelve man tent, then moved up to a soft top trailer and finally a normal hard topped trailer. The family had several favourite spots but seemed to spend a lot of time at the Durham Conservation Area, Alliston and River Place, between Durham and Varney. It was here that the Krafts and five other families (they were all very close friends) rented land and parked their trailers on the Saugeen River near Ayton and Neustadt, for the summer. Hikes, while camping are fond memories for the family. Although, all the kids fondly remembered that you always were responsible for carrying your own gear! (Sounds fair enough!) Some of the campers used to always say, "A job well done, Harvey!” or thank him as “Mr. Fix-it!" He enjoyed the Bridgeport Raceway (stock cars racing) in Bridgeport. Another pastime for Harvey was spending time at the beloved Waterloo Rod & Gun Club. He was a proud member and spent countless hours honing his craft.
Harvey loved the hot and humid weather and enjoyed staying current by watching live news, “The Price is Right,” any type of animal programming and of course, The Weather Channel. When listening to the radio he loved to listen to old western music. When Harvey had time to read he loved the “National Geographic” or of course the Canadian Tire Magazine. He had the wonderful habit of reviewing the whole flyer, circling the items he liked, and then handed you the magazine… got the hint yet? His drink of choice? Carling Beer, of course, or maybe whiskey but it had to be straight up, no mix! Playing cards was another passion, as he loved to play euchre. However, Harvey could be a real stickler for rules and proper game etiquette. If one dared to make the wrong play, Harvey (and most of his playing partners) would simply throw the cards at you. It likely isn’t surprising then that Harvey was also a very picky eater. He was just a “Plain Joe” when it came to feasting – meat, potatoes and vegetables only! No gravy, dips or dressing! But then again, there was always his love for popcorn, cookies, pie (especially lemon meringue), butter tarts or simply anything sweet.
In 1985, Harvey and Mickey bought a forty acre parcel of land outside of Dornoch. In 1991, Harvey suffered a severe heart attack which limited him. In 1992 they moved there full time. In the end the couple decided to move to Chesley in 2000 to make things easier for both Harvey and Mickie.
Sadly, Harvey’s health continued to decline over the years and he passed away at South Bruce Grey Health Centre, Chesley on Wednesday, May 31, 2017 in his 85th year.
Beloved husband of Marjory "Mickie" (Clayfield). Loving father of Chris (Kathie Martin) of Kitchener, Lee (Ken) Roy of New Dundee, Mark (Penny) of Kitchener, Joy (John) Mondy of Puslinch, Danny and Parry, both of Kitchener. Cherished grandfather of Brandy (Mike), Stephanie, Cody, Thomas and great-grandfather of Georgia. Harvey will be fondly remembered by his brother Gordon (Phryl) and brother-in-law Bill Schumacher. He was predeceased by his brothers Leonard and Orville, sister Eva Schumacher, daughter-in-law Marlene (Penny) Cashmore Callahan and his parents Wilson and Gladys (Fisher) Kraft.
In respecting Harvey's wishes cremation has taken place and there will be no further services.
Memorial donations to the Heart & Stroke Foundation would be appreciated as expressions of sympathy.Send to friend