99th birthday party celebrates baseball, education

Earl Henry loves baseball, education and parties.

That’s why his family is cooking up a special start to his 100th year. Henry will celebrate his 99th birthday at the April 18 Brewers game as part of a fundraiser his granddaughter, Jill Finlayson of San Francisco, organized to help raise money for the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee’s Earl and Kathryn Henry Scholarship. In addition to having his name in lights on the scoreboard, Henry will be honored at special reception at the game.

Earl and Kathryn Henry met at Milwaukee State Teachers College, one of UWM’s predecessor institutions. They graduated in 1935, were married 70 years and contributed a combined 55 years of service to the Milwaukee Public Schools. Kathryn, who died in 2007, was a kindergarten teacher and Earl a teacher and administrator. Their daughter, Pat, and son, Thomas, both graduated from UWM.

In 2003, their family surprised Earl and Kathryn by setting up a scholarship fund for School of Education students in their honor, and has been adding to it over the years.

Jill Finlayson says she felt adding to the fund was a good way to celebrate her grandfather’s birthday. And, since he loves baseball and the Brewers, she wanted to take him to a game as close to his birthday as possible. (His actual birthday was April 11, and he’s already received happy birthday tweets from Brewers Jonathan Lucroy and Chris Narveson.)

The School of Education has posted about the event on its Facebook page, aiming to collect 99 “likes” for Earl’s birthday and money for the scholarship fund. The family is matching donations up to $1,000.

So far the scholarship fund has benefited nine students at the School of Education.

“Earl and Kay Henry dedicated their careers to educating Milwaukee’s youth,” says Carol Colbeck, dean of the School of Education . We are grateful that their family continues to support the future of education through this scholarship fund, which helps promising  education students continue their legacy.”

To learn more about the Earl Henry story or to make a donation, visit http://www.razoo.com/story/Earl99.

Media Contact at game: Lyn Hildenbrand, Cell: 414-467-2182.