The Palestine Herald, Palestine, Texas


November 7, 2012

Allen “A.T.” Thomas Henderson

Allen Thomas Henderson, 89, of Angleton passed away Friday, Nov. 2, 2012.

Allen was born on the banks of the Neches River in Anderson County, Texas on Feb. 9, 1923 to James Nathaniel and Ida Elvada (Langston) Henderson. He lived in that area until he graduated from high school in Slocum. Just a few days later he left to serve our country through the U.S. Army, during World War II. Allen earned a Silver Star for unusual bravery and initiative under fire, two Bronze Stars for heroic achievement in action, and a Combat Infantry Badge along with several other military awards for his courage while serving on the front lines in Germany and France. On his 22nd birthday, 16 bullets had damaged his uniform, but amazingly only one had grazed him. He knew God was with him then and throughout his life he continued to faithfully serve the Lord, his country and family. After returning from war, he settled in Clute. He first worked for Freeport Sulphur Company, the Clute Post Office and was a volunteer fireman. In 1950, he began his 32.8 year career with Dow Chemical in the Ethyl Dow plant in Freeport and retired from Dow Plant B in 1982.

Allen married the love of his life, Addie Lee Gray, on Feb. 8, 1952. Together they had three children, whom they taught God, family and education as being the most important things in life. He was a member of First Baptist Church in Angleton. He always cherished the time spent at his family and high school reunions where he got to visit with his aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews of many generations. He was a member of the International Union of Dow Operating Engineers and the VFW Post No. 10378, where he took great pride in raising money for other veterans by selling tickets to VFW Fish Frys and handing out Buddy Poppies. He also spent time with other veterans, speaking to children in elementary schools.

He enjoyed being a bell ringer at Christmastime and spent many hours visiting sick people in hospitals and attending funerals. He once attended nine funerals in five days. Allen was always full of life and enjoyed  playing with the kids. If you got too close he was sure to give you a big hug while rubbing his whiskers against your cheeks. He loved to play practical jokes on his family and close friends and took it well when the joke was on him.

After his wife passed away in 2007, Allen asked to live with his daughter Tina and her family. The day they began adding onto their house for him he suffered a stroke, which left him paralyzed on his left side. He was a joy to have in their home and spent countless hours talking to anyone who would listen.

He would sit in his wheelchair in the driveway, wearing a hat or ball cap with his American flag and waving at everyone who came by. Those who would stop and visit with him will never know how much he enjoyed the few minutes they gave him. He always wanted to help others and was constantly trying to give his shoes and clothes to people he thought might need them worse than he did.

He enjoyed sports and watched every Astros and Rockets game that was televised. When he couldn’t attend, he watched his church on Channel 4 every time it came on. He looked forward to George Easterling bringing him homemade cake, the Late Alton Wilcox bringing him honey and vegetables from his garden, as well as, Jackie Warren, James Singleton, Curtis Hardcastle, Blake Trower, Ryan Kelly, Jennifer Shaw and Abi Oliver, and many others sitting with him and talking about anything and everything.

He was preceded in death by his wife of 55 years, Addie; his parents; and brothers, Marvin, Elvin and Lavoice Henderson.

A.T. is survived by his children, Paula Collins, Danny Henderson and Tina Jackson and husband, Mike, all of Angleton; siblings, Lucille Olgesby of San Marcos, Bro. Anion Henderson (Beth), of Palestine, Geraldine Frazee of Elkhart and Jerry Henderson (Ruby) of Arkansas; grandchildren, Amy Bradberry (Tim), Kristie Jones (Mike), Kory Alford (Michael), Allison Hemphill (Zach), Byron and Ben Jackson; great-grandchildren, Trenton, Emma and Colton Jones and Ava Bradberry; and many nieces, nephews and friends.

Visitation will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 8, 2012 at Palms Funeral Home. Funeral services will be Friday, Nov. 9 at 10 a.m. at First Baptist Church of Angleton with Dr. Rodney Bowman officiating. Services and burial will be in Fields Chapel Cemetery near Palestine, on Saturday, Nov. 10 at 2 p.m. with Brent Trahan officiating.

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