Milton Claude Henry, a retired textile executive and World War II naval aviator, died of gastric cancer Sunday at Gilchrist Center for Hospice Care. The Mays Chapel resident was 88.
Mr. Henry was born and raised in Rocky Mount, N.C. During the Depression, he helped his father establish C.S. Henry Trucking Co., and though he wasn't old enough for a commercial license, he worked as a driver for the fledgling company.
He enlisted in the Navy in 1941 and, after completing training as an aviation machinist's mate, was assigned to VPB-105 Patrol Bombing Squadron in England.
As a PB4Y-1 Liberator bomber crewman, he completed 62 anti-submarine combat missions and was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross.
He returned home at war's end and enrolled at North Carolina State University, where he studied textile engineering on the GI Bill and earned his bachelor's degree in 1949.
Mr. Henry spent his professional career as an executive with Buster Brown Textiles, an Atlanta manufacturer of children's clothing.
After retiring in 1974, he lived in Florida, Georgia and North Carolina before moving to Mays Chapel.
He enjoyed hunting and golfing.
He was an active member of Mays Chapel United Methodist Church, 11911 Jennifer Road, Timonium, where a memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday.
Surviving are his wife of 60 years, the former Martha Nicholson; a son, David M. Henry of Orlando, Fla.; two daughters, Martha H. Somerville of Baltimore and Frieda Tyne H. Fernandes of Los Angeles; a brother, Webster M. Henry of Rocky Mount; five grandchildren, and two step-grandchildren.