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Obituary of Harley Carl Roberts Jr
Harley Roberts was born in Portland, Ore. After many years as a Certified Public Accountant, fittingly, he chose his earthly exit April 18, 2023 (Tax Day). Harley touched the lives of many, personally and professionally, and is fondly remembered for his tireless work in the Portland community and in support of the family he adored. Since his death, the word “legend” has been used repeatedly by friends, colleagues, former clients, and loved ones as a descriptor of his work ethic and his care and compassion for others.
Harley was the eldest son of Harley Carl Roberts, Sr. and Irene Augusta Thompson and grew up in Portland, the eldest of seven siblings. He attended St. John the Baptist Grade School. In his formative years, he was an Altar Boy, a Boy Scout, and an Eagle Scout. In 1958, he graduated from Central Catholic High School and went on to earn a B.S from Portland State in 1963. He later attended the University of Oregon in Biological Sciences and worked in eye research at OHSU. In 1964 Harley married his first wife, Patricia McHugh (d. 2022). They had one child, Hillary Anne. He married Kristin Peterson Echolds, his wife of 50 years, Oct. 13, 1973 and one year later lovingly and joyfully adopted her two young children, Timothy James and Elizabeth Anne (Lizanne).
In 1972, Harley received his Certificate with the Oregon State Board of Accountancy and with George E. Mack, his longtime partner and friend, established the well-known local CPA firm of Mack, Roberts & Co, LLC. From their small two man firm, they went on to build a company of 30 young CPAs and support staff that provided services for individuals and companies including accounting advice, audit, tax and specialized planning and consulting services. Harley was profoundly committed to his work and equated his own personal success to respecting others and being a trusted mentor, advisor, confidant, and friend to his employees, his clients and colleagues. Harley was active in the Portland community, including serving for several years as treasurer for the Portland Timbers and as Board President for Central Catholic High School. In addition, he served on a number of local Boards of Directors and was often called on by many Portland attorneys to act in the capacity of expert witness on their clients’ behalf. In his later years, Harley became an avid fly fisherman and was a well-known fixture on the Deschutes and Alaskan Rivers. In 2006, Kristin and Harley purchased a small villa in St. Thomas Virgin Islands where they spent many wonderful weeks each year with family and friends old and new.
Harley is survived by his beloved wife, Kristin; daughter, Hillary Roberts Kloetzli (Ernie); son, Tim Roberts; daughter, Lizanne Roberts Wicklund; grandson, Nolan Roberts; along with his four surviving brothers, Chris (Kathy), Blaine, Mark (Theresa), Lance (Kelly); and numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins.
A celebration Mass will be held at 10 a.m., Saturday, May 6, 2023, at Central Catholic High School, 2401 S.E. Stark Street, in the Old Gymnasium; Reception following. In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made in Harley’s honor to Legacy Hospice-Portland.
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