|William Eugene Harward, Jr.
Published in The Washington Post from Apr. 10 to Apr. 11, 2020
WILLIAM EUGENE HARWARD
WILLIAM EUGENE HARWARD, JR. Of Annandale, VA, passed
away peacefully at home on Wednesday, April 1, 2020 with his
wife and eldest son at his bedside. He was 94 years old and
died of natural causes.
Bill was a Special Agent for the Federal Bureau of Investigation
and retired in 1977 after 26 years of service.
Bill was born in the town of Dendron, Surry County, VA to William E. Harward, Sr. and
Susan Virginia Barrett on July 24, 1925. His family relocated to Washington, D.C. where
Bill graduated from Roosevelt High School in 1943.
During his early years prior to joining the Navy, Bill had his own band and performed at
various functions in the D.C. area. He enjoyed music from the "Big Band" era and
continued to play the trumpet for most of his life. Bill enrolled in the V-12 Navy College
Training Program in 1943. He studied engineering at Cornell and Northwestern Universities
before being assigned, as a 2nd Lieutenant, to a vessel sailing to the Sea of Japan near
the end of World War II.
After his discharge from the Navy, Bill worked as a camp counselor at YMCA Camp Letts in
Edgewater, MD on the Rhode river. He completed his bachelor's degree at Wilson
Teachers College and graduated in 1949 majoring in math and science.
After teaching junior high school for a period, Bill was accepted into the Federal Bureau of
Investigation, Special Agents training program in 1951. He was assigned to several field
offices during his early career including New Orleans, LA and Boston, MA., before being
transferred to Washington, D.C. in 1954. During his career as a Special Agent, he earned
a master's degree in Forensic Science from George Washington University (1972). Bill
retired from the bureau in 1977 as Chief of the Engineering Section, Science and
After concluding his government service, Bill consulted as an expert witness in support of
forensic audio investigations, and formed a partnership with two other ex-agents, providing
electronic surveillance "sweeps" and security evaluations.
Bill met his future wife, Gloria Berniece Self, at Calvary Baptist Church in Washington, D.C.
where both families were member of the Board of Trustees. He also served as a board
member for the Central Union Mission. Bill and his family attended The United Baptist
Church in Annandale in his later years.
Bill is preceded in death by his parents and is survived by his loving wife of more than 70
years, three sons, a daughter and eight grandchildren: William III (son Matthew) in
Annandale; Kenneth (wife Kathleen, daughters Callie and Ellie (twins), and Anna) in Ft.
Collins, CO; Robert (wife Barbara, sons Michael and Samuel (twins)) in Falls Church, VA;
and a daughter Kathleen Wray (daughters Meagan and Rachael) in Lexington, SC. Bill is
also survived by his sister, Dr. Virginia H. Teller.
Bill will be remembered for his pleasant disposition and kind manners, for his ability to
seemingly fix anything, for his devotion to his faith, and the sacrifices he made and the love
he expressed for his wife and family. The support and leadership he provided was coupled
with a wonderful sense of humor and wit. He coached basketball and baseball little league
teams in support of his children as they grew up. He loved music and playing his trumpet,
tinkering in his workshop, sailing on the Chesapeake Bay, camping with family and church
class friends on North Carolina's Outer Banks, Chincoteague, VA and Myrtle Beach, SC.
and later, traveling with his wife. The family gatherings for holidays and special occasions,
and the love that surrounded, were of special importance and a source of great happiness.
Facing hardships from his battle with leukemia in the 1980's and a stroke in early 2000's,
he never complained but enjoyed a full life strengthened by his faith and the support
received from his family. Bill retained a positive outlook despite his declining health, and
the love he bestowed on his wife and family was a true blessing to receive. Bill will be
greatly missed by his wife and family, but his passing is tempered by knowing that he is
now with the "Man Upstairs". God Bless you, Dad.
A private family service will be conducted at the gravesite for Bill's internment at National
Memorial Cemetery in Falls Church, VA on April 10.
A memorial service will be planned at a later date.