Harry Merlo, an incredible Portland philanthropist who supported Portland Tennis & Education for many years of his life, passed away peacefully Monday morning at age 91. In 2015, Harry Merlo was the focus of our Scholar Athletes’ essays on a community hero who helped to make tennis and education accessible to people, regardless of race, socioeconomic status, or ability. Harry Merlo has visited Portland Tennis & Education throughout the years and connected with the Scholar Athletes in our program. His passion for youth and education inspire Portland Tennis & Education and the entire Portland community to spread kindness and love to all.
Angel, an eighth grader who has been in PT&E since 2012, says, “A good person like Harry Merlo has confidence in himself, respects people, is honest to everyone, and has pride. [...] Harry Merlo used these qualities with kids to inspire them about their future. [...] [He] inspires [PT&E], and we appreciate everything he has done for us everyday. Harry Merlo is a great man who helps young children to fulfill their dreams and goals in their future. Harry Merlo is very important to us because of his donations, kindness, and friendship. Thank you Harry Merlo for being a huge part of [PT&E] and my life.”
The Harry Merlo Foundation, Inc. gives support to child welfare, community development, education, and much more. We deeply appreciate the support the foundation has given Portland Tennis & Education throughout the years, and we will miss Harry’s frequent visits to St. Johns Racquet Center.
Thank you to Harry Merlo for his invaluable support throughout the years. Rest in peace, Harry.