Ronald "Ron" Baxter Henry

Born in Chester, PA on August 7, 1936

Departed on May 14, 2016 and resided in Denver, CO

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Ronald Baxter Henry was born on August 7, 1936, to James (Jim) Henry, Sr. and Essie Lee Ragin Henry in Chester, PA. Jim had moved with his family to Chester from Goldsboro, Maryland in 1921 and Essie had relocated from Perry, Georgia to Chester in 1926 to join her sister, Lula Hodges and her family. Ron, one of five siblings, was the third child and third son of Essie and Jim. He was educated in the  Chester public schools. By junior high school, Ron had begun to demonstrate his outstanding athletic abilities as a baseball player and as a football quarterback

Ron’s eventual career in Major League Baseball began when as a 17 year old, playing in an American Legion All Star Game, he hit a home-run into the left center field stands at Connie Mack Stadium (home of the Philadelphia Phillies) that traveled well over 300 feet. As a catcher, he also threw out several players attempting to steal second base. He was named MVP of the game. As a result, Ron was scouted by a number of professional teams and signed with the Boston (Milwaukee) Braves in 1954. Upon receiving a signing bonus, one of his first acts was to purchase a home for his parents, brothers and sisters which they enjoyed for several decades. Ron’s career lasted for 15 seasons (1954-1968), primarily in the minor leagues. He spent one full season (1961) and part of another (1964 ) in the majors as a member of the Minnesota Twins. His opportunities as a catcher with the Twins were limited by his status as a backup to Earl Battey, a five time American League All-Star catcher.

After his baseball career ended, which had been interspersed by a short stint in the U. S. Army, Ron settled in Denver, Colorado where he became a well known and respected local singer and actor. Ron packed Denver nightclubs for 35 years. During his career he appeared in many of Denver’s hot spots, ie, the Manhattan ,

Grill, the 9th Hole (now Roo Bar), Boston Half Shell, Doc Weeds, Picadilly’s, Falcone’s, and most famously The Bay Wolf in the early 80’s.  His acting career encompassed various venues, including Armando’s, Rodney’s and a turn at the Country Dinner Playhouse in “Damn Yankees”.

During his life journey, Ron was married to Diane Chalmus, of Sicklerville, NJ;   Sarah Saunders of Denver, CO and Leslie Henry , Raleigh, NC.  After moving to Raleigh, he received a heart transplant at Duke University Hospital more than 10 years ago. Ron returned to his beloved Denver in 2008 where he lived for the remaining years of his life among family and close friends.

Ron had a larger than life personality that attracted numerous friends and fans. He had a gift for gab that included storytelling, putting smiles on faces and making people laugh. He was a fan of TV and talk radio and developed strong opinions on many subjects which he would debate and defend until the end.

Graced with a close knit immediate and extended family, Ron grew up in a loving, Christian home in Chester. He was indeed fortunate to have developed special and loyal friendships in Denver, especially since he was dependent on them as his health deteriorated over the years.

The family extends sincere and heartfelt gratitude to two of his true friends,

Bob Fishner and Dana Marsh.  During the final several years of his life, Ron was also blessed by the love and care of his sister Gale, with whom he resided, and her children Mark, Desiree and Mikel who assisted with his significant healthcare needs.

In addition to his parents, Ron was predeceased by his two older brothers, James Henry, Jr. and Winfield Calloway Henry. He leaves to mourn his passing, son Rodney Shelton of Chester, PA; daughter Sheryl Johnson (Cornelius), San Francisco, CA; Donna Moore (Gerald); of Collegeville, PA;  son Jason Henry (Lynn) of Arvada, CO; and daughter Rebecca Mobley (John) of Orlando, Fl.; sisters Valaida Henry of Chester, PA and Gale Boulware of Denver, CO ; ,grandchildren, Rodney Shelton, Jr., Yendor Shelton, Ashley Berkley, Anjelica Berkley, Kelly Moore, Jasmine Mobley, Kameron Mobley, Tyson Mobley, Jaylen Henry, Trey Henry, Jordan Bryan; two step children, Lisa Powell and Kelly Tharpe and eleven great grandchildren; sisters-in-law Marian Henry and Josephine Henry; and many  nieces, nephews, cousins and friends throughout the USA.

A memorial service will be held on Friday, June 3, 2016 at Valley View Church of God, 4390 S. Lowell Blvd., Sheridan, CO 80110.

A Celebration of Life for Ron will be on Saturday, June 4, 2016 at Herbs Lounge, 2057 Larimer Street, Denver, CO  80205, 303-299-9555.

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