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In Memory of John A. Harras

On March 31, 2024, John Anthony Harras, 67, passed away following a 10-year battle with early onset Alzheimer’s disease. He was born on October 14, 1956, in Queens, New York.

A graduate of Plainedge High School, the State University of New York at Stony Brook, and the University at Buffalo School of Law, John climbed the legal industry ladder from a small law firm in Buffalo, to the AmLaw 200 law firm of Dow Lohnes & Albertson in Manhattan, to founding with two partners the law firm of Harras Bloom & Archer LLP in Melville. While a partner at Harras Bloom & Archer LLP, John helped shape the landscape of zoning law in New York State by representing developers for a residential community, The Greens at Half Hollow in Suffolk County, which involved one of the first applications of “inclusionary zoning” mandates from a municipality. Inclusionary zoning requires the construction of affordable housing units in certain residential developments. John’s representation of the landmark development influenced future affordable housing laws in New York. Due to his expertise in land use and zoning law, John also served as a referee in the New York State Supreme Court for cases involving easement and boundary disputes.

In his personal life, John was the loving husband of Rebecca, to whom he was married for 38 years, and adoring father of John Martin, Jessica, and Daniel. Being the oldest of five siblings, John regularly stewarded conversations from the head of the table at holiday dinners, leading the entire family into roaring laughter. On occasion, he was even known to recite a poem or song that he had penned in his spare time. He was filled with knowledge of politics, history, pop culture, sports, and literature. His humor and prowess with prose empowered him to bring happy tears to those around him. Notwithstanding his passing, his wit and wisdom will live on in the hearts and minds of his friends and family, all of whom know he is in a better place.

John will be deeply missed by his surviving family and friends: his beloved wife Rebecca Harras, mother Josephine Harras, sons John M. (Allie) Harras and Daniel (Josely) Harras, daughter Jessica (Brennan) Dyal, grandson Evan Dyal, brother Rob (Anne) Harras, sister Joanne Harras, brother Steven Harras, brother Joseph (Christine) Harras, niece Gianna Harras, nephews Christopher, Matthew and Nicholas Harras.

A Memorial Gathering to honor John’s life will be held on Thursday, April 4, 2024, at the Deer Park – Mangano Family Funeral Home in Deer Park, NY. The first session will be from 2:00 pm to 4:30 pm; the second will be held from 7:00 pm to 9:30 pm. A funeral mass will be held on Friday, April, 2024 at 11:45 a.m. at Saint Matthew’s Roman Catholic Church in Dix Hills, NY.

In lieu of donating flowers to the family, the family requests that any donations be remitted to the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America.


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