William "Bill" Lovejoy Henning, Sr. was born in Sulphur, Louisiana on July 25, 1922, the son of William Thomas Henning and Evelyn Mary Henning. Bill died at his home on Saturday, March 24, 2012 surrounded by his family. His father was a merchant in Sulphur, who ran a general mercantile store on N. Huntington St. Bill attended school in Sulphur and graduated from Sulphur High School in 1940. He attended McNeese College for two years; World War II intervened, and he entered the Army Air Corp in 1942. He served in Europe and was discharged in 1946.
He finished L.S.U. Law School in 1949 and obtained a Juris Doctorate Degree. While at L.S.U. he was a member of the legal fraternity Phi Delta Phi and a member of the Moot Court Advisory Board. He returned to Sulphur and set up his law practice where he practiced law publicly for over fifteen years.
He leaves behind his loving wife to whom he was married for 62 years. Lena Argin Baber and Bill were married on July 23, 1949. They have three sons: William "Dub" L. Henning, Jr. and wife, Susan; John A. Henning, Sr. and wife, Ginny; and Thomas G. Henning and wife, Shirley, and 11 grandchildren.
In 1952 when his father passed away, Bill and his brother, J.T. Henning, took over the operation of Cameron Telephone Company, a small independent telephone company their father had started in 1928, to initially serve Hackberry, Louisiana. The lines were eventually extended to serve the remainder of Cameron Parish, and Carlyss, Grand Lake, and Moss Bluff in Calcasieu Parish.
Since the early 50's the telephone company developed into a large and very successful telecommunications group that included PCS, Cellular, wireless communications, internet, cable television and other communication services that provided the latest and most modern technology available.
Bill served as Chief Executive Officer of Cameron Communications until the company was sold in 2010. He was also an officer and director in numerous related telecommunications companies, including Cameron Telephone Company, Cameron Telephone Company-Texas, Elizabeth Telephone Company, and LBH, L.L.C. and a former officer and director of Mercury Long Distance, Mercury Cellular Telephone Company and US Unwired. At the time of his death, he was currently working on developing a multi-state wireless broadband internet company.
He was a member of the Louisiana State Bar Association, a member and former president of the Louisiana Telephone Association, former director of the United States Telephone Association, former director of National Rural Telecom Association, and former director of Calcasieu Marine National Bank. He was a charter member and former president of the Calcasieu Parish Industrial Board, Charter member and Vice President of the Chennault Industrial Airport Authority; Member and former officer of the West Calcasieu Port, Harbor and Terminal District. He has worked for and been involved as member, president, and director of numerous business, fraternal, civic, veterans, and charitable organizations and community projects. Bill was a founding member of the Half Fast Tennis Club in Sulphur, Louisiana.
Bill was a member of Henning Memorial United Methodist Church, a church named in honor of his grandfather, where Bill and Lena continue to attend service. He is a former chairman of the Official Board, former President of the Board of Trustees, Sunday School teacher, and a member of the Centenary Church Council. He served on the Committee on Interjurisdictional Relations, and was twice a delegate to the Louisiana United Methodist Conference. Bill was proud of the fact that he, along with his three sons, were able to assist in getting the Methodist Children's Home of Southwest Louisiana built recently in southwest Louisiana.
During his life, Bill enjoyed helping people in need, playing tennis, walking, traveling and photography. He loved his family and especially enjoyed visiting with his grandchildren and telling them stories. He treated his nephews and nieces like they were his own children and loved them very much.
Pallbearers are John A. Henning, Jr., William T. Henning, II, Travis G. Henning, Daniel L. Henning, Grant T. Henning, and John David Henning. Honorary pall bearers are Hillary E. Henning, Katherine A. Henning, Warren T. Henning, Madeline E. Henning and Meredith J. Henning.
His service will be on Tuesday, March 27, 2012, 10:30 a.m. at Henning United Methodist Church. Visitation shall be at Henning United Methodist Church in Sulphur, Louisiana on Monday, March 26, 2012 from 4-8 p.m. A graveside service will be held in Henning Cemetery under the direction of Hixson-Sulphur Memorial Funeral Home. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Henning United Methodist Church or the Methodist Children's Home of Southwest Louisiana. The family would like to thank Dr. Kevin Schlamp and the various caregivers working for the Henning's for all of their help and comfort that they have given to Mr. Henning and the family.