William Taylor (‘T’) Henry, Jr. passed away on April 24, 2021, two weeks before his 92nd birthday.
The second son of William and Nell Hardie Henry, Dad was born in a coal camp in Gatliff, Kentucky on May 6, 1929. His family grew up poor and hard and bounced around Appalachian coal mining camps until the family settled in Oak Ridge in early 1944. Due to all the moving, he was two years behind in school, but he quickly caught up and graduated on time from Oak Ridge High School in 1948.
Dad proudly served in the U. S. Army 4th Infantry Division from 1950-1952 and then returned to Oak Ridge. He never lived anywhere else or had any desire to. He was proud of Oak Ridge and its history, and he was always full of ideas of how to improve and promote his beloved hometown.
In February 1955, he married Billie Sue Looper of Hickory, North Carolina, and they had two sons. Dad was a hot cell operator at Oak Ridge National Laboratory for over 30 years before retiring—but he definitely did not slow down. He enjoyed whittling, traveling, working in his yard, collecting old tools, and spoiling his grandkids. He enjoyed listening to old-time country and bluegrass music, and he was an avid reader of Appalachian literature and classic poetry. His keen intellectual curiosity and interests were alive and thriving to the very end.[Read more…]