I have dedicated this site to the memory of my father, Earl O’Dell Henry, and given you a vivid look into this remarkable man who died at
the age of 33 in the U.S. Navy's greatest tragedy of World War II -- the sinking of the USS Indianapolis.
My mother and father enjoyed a last evening together with dinner at the Peabody Hotel in Memphis, Tennessee, in June 1945. Although not
evident in this photo, my mother was pregnant with me. This is the only photo of the three of us together. My Dad returned to the ship in
California at the end of his three week leave. I was born two days later. Mother had not been expected to deliver for six more weeks
My father received photos of me aboard the USS Indianapolis at Guam, the last port of call before the tragic sinking of the ship.
Through a personal phone call, Captain McVay expressed to my mother how excited my father was as he showed the baby pictures to anyone who
would look. This is one of those photos:
In response to my birth, my father paid the highest compliment to my mother with this handwritten note addressed to Earl, Jr. as an
expression of the quality of "Dad" he planned to be. My mother received this after his death:
See photos of the collection of his mounted birds which my mother and I donated to the
Ijams Nature Center in Knoxville.
I am blessed to have a special relationship with my father even though I never met him. I am grateful that my mother preserved so much of
his legacy to include his mounted birds, original paintings, letters written while at sea, his bird books filled with notes, and many other
evidences of his life.
Throughout this site, you will be able to see the beauty and detail in his paintings, and feel the enduring affinity he had for expressing
his creativity through painting what he loved -- birds and nature.
To continue Dr. Henry’s legacy, bird prints or note cards
are available for viewing or purchase.
On the the history page, you will read Dr. Henry's biography describing his study of birds, view videos of his
life, listen to his imitations of bird calls recorded at the Naval Academy in 1944, and view the collection of mounted birds donated to the
Ijams Nature Center in Knoxville, TN.
Whether you visited this site to purchase prints or note cards, or simply are studying history, you will find an interesting and unique site
that is a true record of my father's legacy and mine.
- Earl Henry, Jr.