Cover photo for Stephen Henry's Obituary
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1943 Steve 2024

Stephen Henry

January 25, 1943 — May 15, 2024

Clinton

Stephen Samuel Henry, 81, of Clinton, MT, passed away on Wednesday May 15, 2024, at St. Patrick Hospital, after a brief illness.

Steve was born in Los Angeles on January 25th, 1943, the second child of Melvin and Louise Henry. He grew up in Culver City, CA and graduated from Culver Senior High School in 1960. He attended UCLA, where he met his friend and future brother-in-law, Norm Gehlke. They bonded over a love of forestry, which led Steve to pursue undergraduate studies at the University of Montana in Missoula, where his brother Dave was working as a meteorologist. Steve changed majors to mathematics, earned a Master's Degree, and made Montana his permanent and much-beloved home.

While studying for his Masters in 1965, Steve took a job as a graduate assistant at the fledgling Computer Center at the University. That "temporary" job lasted over 46 years, with Steve finally retiring as Senior Associate CIO in 2011. In that time, he was instrumental in keeping the University at the forefront of the digital age. Far more importantly, it was at the Computer Center where he met his soul-mate and the absolute love of his life, Olympic Luger (in 1968) Ellen Williams. They were married in 1971 and had four wonderful children, Amanda (John); Andrew (Shana); Matthew (Chrissie); and Anna (Eli). Steve had two beloved grandsons, Jonah, age 21, and Eli, age16. He helped the boys learn to fish, change irrigation pipes, and toast the perfect marshmallow over a campfire.

In addition to his passion for the Montana outdoors, Steve also had a deep love of all kinds of music, from Simon and Garfunkel to Pink Floyd and Andrea Bocelli, but it was American and Celtic folk music that truly touched his soul. He taught himself to play the guitar and banjo and loved to annoy his children with attempts to scratch out a tune on an old violin. He was an avid reader of many subjects, and a devotee of American history and the writings of J. R. R. Tolkien. Most significantly, Steve was a man of profound faith, and deeply learned in Catholic and Protestant traditions as well as Judaism.

Steve often said how blessed he felt to have been able to live in Montana, a land of imagination and legend. His beautiful, 15-acre parcel of land was a joy and a challenge that enlivened and inspired him. His work in the Computer Center took him to many parts of the state, where he met people from diverse and fascinating backgrounds. He was interested in their stories, listened eagerly and shared readily. He had a hearty laugh and a clever wit, a twinkle in his eye, a true love of nature and for all of God's creatures, great and small. He was an honorable, humble gentleman of the rarest sort, and he will be loved and missed always.

A private family memorial service will be held at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to Meals on Wheels Missoula, Habitat for Humanity, or to Animeals, a local feline rescue organization. People and pets in need were of special concern to Steve and Ellen, and he would wish for some of them to be cared for in his honor.

May the memory of the righteous be a blessing forever.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Stephen Henry, please visit our flower store.

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