A brother remembers a highway hero

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Updated Dec 11, 2017

Roger Henry wrote in with a story that attests to the professionalism so many bring to business of trucking, particularly when it comes to the safety of the motoring public in spite of everything.

Billy A. Henry Sr. — Oct. 12, 1955-May 9, 2016Billy A. Henry Sr. — Oct. 12, 1955-May 9, 2016

Billy A. Henry Sr., Roger’s brother pictured here, of Cross County, Ark., was under an oversize load near El Paso, Texas, on Monday, May 9, Roger says. “The autopsy report concludes that he suffered a fatal heart attack. We lost him that day and that truly is the end of the sad part of this story.”

After the trooper investigating the on-highway incident concluded his work, he went a little farther, Roger adds. “He contacted us, praising my brother as a professional and a heroic man. His conclusions were that in the midst of this attack, my brother became selfless, regaining and maintaining control of his load, bringing it to rest without injury to any other person.”

In his review of the photos at the scene, Roger says, the loaded rig “truly appears parked neatly, upright,” and as if the problem was anticipated. A experienced driver himself, Roger understands the effort “it must have taken to achieve this. As a brother, I am humbled and could not be more proud of my brother, the reflection that he leaves as his last act and the continuation of representing our industry and the many individuals that form that industry as good, strong and moral people.”

And for the law enforcement of the El Paso region, Roger says this: “The professionals in that region demonstrated compassion and courtesy, as they cared for my brother’s remains [in] the process of bringing him home.”

When he wasn’t hauling, Roger says, Billy “enjoyed riding his motorcycle and fishing. He was the epitome of a country boy, our family’s defender and one hell of a brother. At the time, it seemed a bit of a burden being a pupil at the Billy Henry School of Trucking. After 34 years as his pupil, I am improved immensely and able to do what I do today through his leadership and mentoring. I’d give anything for another 20 years.”

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Roger shared the following details about his brother and the trucking family. I wish them all well, as I hope you’ll join me in doing. Rest in peace, Billy.


Billy A Henry, Sr. was born on October 12, 1955 in Cross County, Arkansas. He begin his career in trucking as a farmhand about 1973, moving into OTR as soon as it became permissible. At one point, he did operate a DBA business called Henry Trucking, but returned to the driver sector after a few years and industry changes. His experience includes hauling cattle, petroleum, aggregates, flatbed and over-dimensional freight. For about five years, he was leased to Dallas-Mavis through the Harris Agency of Steele, Mo.. He ended his contract relationship with Dallas-Mavis, sold his truck and began driving for John Harris under contract with Texas Roadmasters. I would mention to you that Billy and John Harris had become friends and had the most dysfunctional relationship ever but obviously cared for each others. John recently told me that they were like brothers and I can understand that.

Billy received safety award(s) from Colonial Freight Services, Knoxville, Tenn., and Dallas-Mavis, Langhorne, Penn. He displayed them prominently in his family room and was very proud of his achievements. He drove for 43 years, 40 of them OTR.

Other drivers in the family:
Marion “Buster” Henry, father
Bernice “Bea” Ray, mother
Bobby J “Running Drunk” Ray, step-father 
Betty “Hellcat” Harvison, sister
Billy “007” Karow, brother-in-law
Cyndi “Princess” Counts, sister-in-law
Roger “Cat House Mouse” Henry, brother
Marvin L. Rogers, step-brother
Randy Ray, step-brother
Charles Karow, nephew 
Bobby Harvison, nephew

Billy was returned to Cross County, Ark., via air to Memphis, Tenn., and ground to Wynne, Cross County, Ark., where he was treated respectfully by Kernodle Funeral Services. Ministry was provided by The Cowboy Church in Wynne, internment in Tyronza, Ark. Billy is at rest beside our Dad, Buster, and Aunt Dollie, his favorite person ever.