David William Harsha

August 12, 1949 ~ November 11, 2019 (age 70)


Dr. David William Harsha, born on August 12, 1949, passed away peacefully on November 11, 2019. Dr. Harsha earned his undergraduate degree at Kansas University and his doctorate in Physical Anthropology from Tulane University. He was a leading researcher for the Bogalusa Heart Study, helping understand how proper diet and exercise can achieve positive long-term health outcomes. He worked for more than 20 years at LSU’s Pennington Biomedical Research Center, continuing his work to understand and address heart disease risk factors.
Dr. Harsha was one of 12 children. He was a beloved husband to Gayle Baer, Ph.D., a father to Celeste Morvant, Seth Baer-Harsha, Aaron Baer-Harsha, and Dr. Sonya Lydick. He was uncompromising in his belief in justice, equality and the dignity of others, and imparted this onto his family, who were his greatest source of pride and devotion. Family and friends are invited to attend a Funeral Service at Tharp-Sontheimer-Tharp Funeral Home, 1600 N. Causeway Blvd, Metairie, LA 70001 on Wednesday, November 13, 2019 at 2:00 pm. Visitation will be held from 1:00 pm till 2: 00 pm. Interment to follow at Gates of Prayer Cemetery on St. Joseph St. New Orleans. In lieu of flowers, the family asks for donations in Dr. Harsha’s memory to the ACLU or the American Heart Association.

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