80 Over Eighty Honoree – Donald Henderson

The story of Donald Henderson of Lockhart was shared by his daughter-in-law, Cheryl. Don is the humble, go-to-guy for his friends, family and whole community. He spends his days helping those in need. Most importantly, he instills a sense of purpose in his grandsons Hayden, Jackson, and Carter. He is frequently spotted giving rides to doctor appointments or the pharmacy or coming to the rescue when a neighbor, friend or family member needs help around the house.

Photo by Annie Ray – annieraycreative.com

Donald was born in the small town of Dexter, Missouri where life was reminiscent of The Andy Griffith Show. In Dexter everyone waves, and neighbors take care of each other. This way of life and admiring his father’s service in WWII developed Don’s values.

Don joined the military after graduating from high school and traveled the world for 26 years. After retirement, he became an active member of his church and feels like he is living an even better life now that he has his extended church family to serve and uplift physically and spiritually.

His advice for aging is that “You can’t lay down and die, you have to keep going.” These days Don wakes up at 5 am to meet friends for coffee and breakfast. It’s a fellowship where they solve the world’s problems, or at least Lockhart’s problems. Afterwards Don is on to lending a hand for whoever needs it in the community.

Don says that what is different about being older is that when you wake up in the morning you are happy just to wake up. In retirement, every day you get to live the life you want without having to go to work, and while you’re living with less money, it’s a bonus to have more time to help people.


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