Harold Durant Broughton
Harold Durant Broughton
Promoted to Glory
Harold Durant Broughton was born Dec. 7, 1922, in Flint, Michigan, the youngest child in a family of eight. Raised in a musical Salvation Army family, Harold played in Army bands as a young man, but his primary instrument became the piano.
In November 1943, Harold married Ruth Clarke at the Los Angeles Congress Hall Corps. Shortly thereafter, he was sent to the Philippines with the U.S. Army, where he earned a Purple Heart in the great Battle of Leyte Gulf in 1944.
After a brief stint working for Bank of America, Harold and Ruth became Salvation Army officers, entering the San Francisco School for Officers’ Training in 1950 with their two young sons, Bruce and Bill. They were appointed corps officers in Wenatchee, Walla Walla and Seattle, Washington, and were appointed to the Training School staff in 1955. From 1958, Harold was the divisional financial secretary in Denver, Phoenix, Honolulu and San Francisco. In 1964, the couple resumed work as corps officers, first in Santa Ana and then Long Beach, Calif. In 1967, Harold went to London to attend the International College of Officers and afterwards accepted an appointment to Kingston, Jamaica as territorial financial secretary for Central America and the West Indies with the rank of major.
In 1971, after the couple concluded their work as Salvation Army officers, Harold began working for an accounting firm in Santa Ana, but briefly interrupted his work in finance to work as an orchestrator/copyist in film and television. Harold worked on TV shows such as Quincy (for which he composed some music, earning him an election to membership with ASCAP), BJ and the Bear, as well as The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, copying music for Doc Severinson and his big band. Consistent with his energetic life and nature, Harold returned to finance, eventually retiring from Freedom Communications, Inc. in Irvine, California in 1987. After the loss of Ruth in 1992, Harold moved briefly to Adelaide, Australia, and after a few years returned to the U.S. to live first in Santa Monica, then Clearwater, Fla., eventually returning to Santa Monica to be closer to his family. He attended the Santa Monica Corps while living at the Silvercrest Residence until December 2009, when, in failing health, he moved to assisted living in Eagle Rock, California. Harold died peacefully in his sleep on Oct. 13, 2010.
Harold was a faithful husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather, leaving his two sons, five grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren. He was a lover of people and a devoted pianist, a pastime that he elevated to a calling right to the end.