Henry J. Birdwell, III (’72)

Henry went to be with Jesus Christ his lord and savior on Sunday, June 28, 2020. He is survived by his wife & best friend, her three daughters, Ally, a rescued greyhound, a brother, stepsister, stepbrother, nieces and nephews.Henry graduated from Jones High School in Houston, Texas in 1962. He attended the University of Houston on a full scholarship as a student trainer. After college he entered the United States Air Force following the traditions of the men in his family. Henry served with honor in Vietnam from 1966-1967. He had the opportunity to travel to several bases and had the great pleasure of working with the Bob Hope Show–a big bucket list item. After his military service he was offered the position as athletic trainer at Holmes High School in San Antonio, Texas in 1972. He then became the athletic trainer at Winston Churchill High School. During this time Henry earned his Master of Education and mid-management degrees at Our Lady of the Lake University. Later he became an assistant principal at Winston Churchill High School where he worked until 1997. After his experience as an assistant principal, he led the team at Blossom Athletic Center as an athletic director for NEISD, until he retired in 2004.Over the course of his career Henry was involved in the lives of countless students, teachers, administrators, parents and so many more. There was rarely a restaurant, grocery store visit or family vacation where he didn’t run into someone from his extensive past working in the San Antonio school system. “Henry Birdwell! Is that you? I know you!” or some version of this exclamation was said in public outings too many times to count. Henry often expressed his gratitude for the student trainers, coaches, etc who contributed to create successful athletic programs across the great state of Texas.Henry will be missed incredibly by all that knew him. His sense of humor was legendary especially in all the doctor offices he visited the last few years. Regardless of his physical health he never failed to show his family how intensely he loved them. We will remember his goofy, mostly inappropriate jokes and the inadvertent way of teaching a life lesson. He was also so proud of “his girls” (stepdaughters). He bragged to all that would listen about their accomplishments.Henry’s family would like to thank everyone at Oak Park HEB for always lifting his spirits. Thank you to the Barrios family and our favorite servers Mac and Henry, at the restaurant. Thank you to everyone at Laurel Heights Methodist for always making Henry feel welcome. Thanks to KRTU for great jazz and great people.A celebration of Henry’s life will take place Saturday, August 1st from 4-7pm atLa Veranda located at 1746 Lockhill Selma Rd SATX 78213. We invite you to join us in remembering and honoring Henry. Per Henry’s request “No tears! No dark clothes! Come with a smile on your face and a song on your lips.”Instead of flowers the family suggests that donations be made the Laurel Heights United Methodist church where Henry and his wife were members for many years.

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