June 17, 1923 – May 3, 2012 Bethel W. Henslee, 88, of Wolfe City died May 3, 2012, at the Harrison House in Greenville following a short illness.A funeral serves was held on Sunday May 6, 2012 at 4:30 p.m. at the First United Methodist Church of Wolfe City with Rev. Buist Wilson, Dr. Ed Lee and Rev. Lee Birdsong officiating. Burial is in Mount Carmel Cemetery.
Mr. Henslee was born June 17, 1923, in rural Wolfe City; the son of Carl Leslie and Leta Elnora Jones Henslee. He married his high school sweetheart, Billie Ruth Barker, on Nov. 27, 1941.
Bethel was a man of many hats, although his favorite was definitely a cowboy hat.
As a young man, Bethel served his country in the Army. While serving in the Army in Japan during World War II, Bethel had the honor of driving Gen. Douglas MacArthur to the battleship USS Missouri, where the end of the war declaration was signed.
Bethel worked for the U.S. Postal Service as a letter carrier and was described as a very reliable and affable man. It was these traits that made him a beloved postal carrier for more than 20 years. He was dedicated to his job, but more importantly he cherished the friends he made on his route.
Bethel was also a rancher and farmer that had a tremendous amount of admiration for the land and the animals. He was proud of his champion stud horses and felt honored to have the opportunity to work with the American Quarter Horse Association.
His deep-rooted passion for the cowboy ways led him to be one of the founding members of the Wolfe City Rodeo Club.
Bethel became the mayor of Wolfe City in 2004 and was very proud to serve his community and neighbors in the city that he loved. He knew it was a honor and a privilege to be an elected official. He served until 2009.
He was a steward of the Wolfe City First United Methodist Church as well as the longest member of the church. He was a family man, friend, farmer and rancher.
Surviving are two daughters and sons-in-law, Novella Thacker and husband Mike of Rockwall and Cam Millsap and husband Harold of Greenville; four grandchildren, Marcella Houston, Natalie and Brad Peters, Heath and Kim Thacker and Wendy Millsap; four great-grandchildren, Lincoln and Dakota Thacker and Justin and Kailey Peters; brother, Jimmie Henslee of Grand Prairie; several nieces and nephews and extended family, Kenneth Thacker , Kaitlan Harrison and Skipper and Christine Creed.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Billie Ruth Henslee, in 2000; his parents; brother, Carlton Henslee and sister, Veda Henslee.
Pallbearers are Brad Peters, Heath Thacker, Justin Peters, Dakota Thacker, Jimmie Hensle II and Gary Giles.