Michelle A. Harris

February 23, 2021
Michelle A. Harris

Gifts & Memorial Donations

Michelle A. Fayand Harris, 87, passed away peacefully holding her daughter Sandra’s hand on the evening of February 23, 2021.  Michelle is preceded in death by her parents, Joseph and Denise Fayand, as well as her loving husband and partner of 58 years, Dorce Z. Harris.


Michelle was born February 13, 1934 in Paris, France.  Michelle’s job at the PX had her parking right outside of Dorce’s post in France, where he first saw her beautiful face and fell in love for a lifetime.  They married March 31, 1955 in the City of La Rochelle, on the west coast of France.  They traveled around the world until finally settling in Denbigh, Virginia.  It was there that she began taking care of dogs, especially poodles.  She eventually moved to Williamsburg and opened Dorcelle Kennels and affectionately became “The Poodle Lady”.  She had clients come to her from all over Hampton Roads and Richmond, and also bred and showed prize-winning poodles.


Michelle is survived by her loving daughter, Sandra, her partner Melissa Nugent, her almost daughter, Denise Johnson and her husband Jim as well as her poodles Kate and Joelle.  It is to be mentioned that Denise, Jim and Melissa have been the utmost of love, kindness and care, most especially in these last six months.

Michelle also leaves behind 4 grandchildren, Jessica, William, Michelle and Tyler, as well as 6 great-grandchildren.  Also included is Michelle’s son Steven (Judy) and her daughter Sylvia (Bob).


There will be a visitation at Bucktrout Funeral Home, 4124 Ironbound Road, Williamsburg, VA, 23188 on Monday, March 1, 2021 from 4-7pm and a small service beginning at 7pm.  Inurnment will be held privately at a later date.  In deepest respect for Michelle’s wishes, please do not send flowers.  Instead, please donate to the Heritage Humane Society, 430 Waller Mill Road, Williamsburg, VA, 23185.

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  • February 28, 2021
    Ivette Griggs says:
    A couple of years ago, during a temporary stay in Williamsburg, I had the precious privilege of being introduced to Michelle. I enjoyed conversing with her in French and talking about her native country. Her house was full of motifs that reminded me of that interesting place. I did also get to meet her caring daughter, Sandy. And I also had the fun encounter with her cute poodles who liked to sit by me while we engaged in interesting conversation. The subject she loved to talk about the most was the beautiful promise held out in the Bible. I was so moved when Sandy told me that during her last days Michelle would listen to audio recordings of Bible passages I read for her in French. Thinking of Michelle, I will always remember the spark in her eyes and her contagious smile - which will be missed only for a little while. It was a privilege to have known Michelle. (Below is the same message in French) Il y a quelques années, pendant une visite temporaire à Williamsburg, j'ai eu le précieux privilège d'être introduite à Michelle. J'ai beaucoup apprecié converser avec elle dans la langue française et parler de son pays natal. Sa maison était pleine des motifs qui m'ont rappelé ce emplacement intéressant. J'ai aussi rencontrée sa fille attentionée, Sandy. En plus, j'ai eu la rencontre amusante avec ses caniches mignons qui aimaient s'asseoir à côté de moi pendant que nous avions des discussions agréables. Le sujet qu'elle aimait le plus était la belle promesse contenue dans la Bible. J'ai été tellement emu quand Sandy m'a raconté que pendant ses derniers jours Michelle écoutait des enregistrements audio des passages scripturaires que j'avais lu pour elle dans la langue française. En pensant à Michelle, je me souviendrai toujours de l'étincelle dans ses yeux et de son sourire contagieux. Ceux ne sera absent que pour un petit moment. Ce fut un privilège pour moi d'avoir connue à Michelle.