William Franklin Henry, Jr died on Monday, April 24, 2023, at Elkhart Meadows in Elkhart, IN ending his battle with dementia. He was 76 years old.
Bill was born on November 27, 1946, in Cincinnati, OH to the late William F. and Anna Mae (Bass) Henry. Along with his parents, Bill was preceded in death by his brother, John Ronald Henry. He is survived by his sister, Anne Nickerson. He is also survived by his wife, Patricia Rose (Klingenberg); daughters, Mary Rebecca Sachs and Anne Katherine Malinowski; sons-in-law, Lee Sachs and Michael Malinowski; 5 grandchildren, Benjamin Henry Malinowski, Hannah Noelle Sachs, Daniel Edmund Malinowski, Lillian Rose Malinowski and Abigail Elizabeth Sachs; and many nephew & nieces as well as great nephews & great nieces.
Bill grew up in Cincinnati and although he would later move away from the city, he remained a lifelong Reds and Bengals fan. He attended Western Hills High School and the University of Cincinnati where he was a member of the Alpha Sigma Phi fraternity.
While at UC, Bill met his wife of 52 years (53 years on June 7th) on a blind date. Bill did not finish his degree in engineering, instead he chose to go into calculator and copier sales. He always said he was fascinated by the new technology after having to use a slide ruler throughout his schooling. While Bill was working for Monroe Copiers, he and Pat would find homes in Cincinnati, Bismarck, ND and finally in South Bend, IN in 1984. Bill left sales in the early 90’s and became a rural postal carrier in Osceola, IN, the job which he retired from in 2011.
Bill and Pat had 2 daughters, Mary Rebecca (Becky) and Anne Katherine (Katie). Bill was a wonderful father. He spent many hours passing on knowledge to his girls: reading to them at bedtime, helping with homework, playing cards, and demonstrating how to do home repairs. Bill was also an amazing grandfather to his 5 grandchildren. He found great pleasure in attending their concerts, games, and plays. Bill made sure to pass on his love of the arts to his grandchildren by taking them to many museums and exposing them to all types of music, especially musicals.
Bill liked to make everything into a game, delighting his family with his joy of life. One game which held a special place in Bill’s heart was baseball. He umpired both softball and baseball in Cincinnati and Bismarck. He coached and umpired softball in South Bend. Bill became a Cubs fan in Bismarck because WGN was the only MLB station he could receive in North Dakota. He would go on to cheer for the Cubs for the rest of his life. Bill also enjoyed rooting on the IU Hoosiers football and basketball teams.
Bill loved the natural world. With Pat, Bill loved to garden. Bill especially loved to grow roses, expanding his garden with each house they lived in. When Bill retired, he became a Master Gardener through the Purdue Extension. Animals also had a special place in Bill’s heart, especially dogs. He loved to throw a ball or sneak a snack to his four-legged friends.
Bill was always up for an adventure. He loved exploring and traveling. With Pat, he visited 42 of the 50 United States. Bill and Pat also had a winter home in Green Valley, AZ for a few years where they liked to explore the area which was so different from their midwest home.
The family will have a memorial service for Bill in the summer in one of his favorite places: his garden.
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