Temptations Singer Otis “Damon” Harris Dead at 62
The Baltimore Sun reports that Otis “Damon” Harris, singer for The Tempations, passed away Monday after a 14-year-long battle with prostate cancer. He was 62.
Harris was a resident of Owings Mills in Baltimore and died at Joseph Richey Hospitce in Seton Hill. Family spokesman Chuck Woodson said he was in remission until three years ago, but the cancer got “pretty bad” during the end of last summer. Harris was in the hospital from November until last week, where he was sent to hospice.
Harris auditioned for the group at the age of 21 in 1971 over a decade younger than the rest of the group. He was brought in and told to change his name because the group already had an Otis: Otis Williams. Harris won three Grammys with the group and recorded nine gold records. He left the group in 1975.
Woodson said that Harris, who also lived in Reno and Philadelphia, always planned to return to Baltimore. He said: “Baltimore is his home, and he always championed being a Baltimorean.“
After he was diagnosed, he became an advocate for men getting regular prostate exams and was active with the organization Stand Up to Cancer. Harris was vocal about cancer awareness because he waited too long to get checked. Woodson added: “He didn’t want anyone to suffer the consequences that he suffered for not doing that.“