Mary Henszey, a business executive and innovative community leader who inspired others with a glowing smile and a belief that it is a privilege to do positive things for the city you live in and love, died on Sunday, August 17, in Naples, Florida. She was 83.
Mary dedicated a life-long passion to community involvement including the Great Blue Heron Girl Scout Council, the United Way, the Oconomowoc Chamber of Commerce, the Oconomowoc Scholarship Fund, and the Greater Milwaukee Foundation, among others. Along with her husband, Richard Henszey, Mary co-chaired the fundraising campaign to build the YMCA at Pabst Farms, and they were founders and inaugural donors of the Oconomowoc Area Foundation, where Mary served as board member. Mary described Oconomowoc as a “special community in every way.”
Mary retired in 1996 as Chairman and CEO of Sentry Equipment Corp., a designer and manufacturer of power plant equipment for utility companies. Mary joined the company in 1968 as Director of Human Resources and assumed the executive position when the founder, her husband Richard, retired. The company was sold to their employees through an ESOP and continues to flourish.
A fun and energetic presence marked all of Mary’s endeavors from an early age. At Waupun High School, she was class president, homecoming queen, cheerleading captain, drum major of the marching band, and the soloist singer with the dance band. While studying for a nursing degree at St. Mary’s Hospital in Madison, Wisconsin, Mary served as President of the St. Mary’s School of Nursing and President of the Wisconsin Student Nursing Association.
Mary met her husband Dick on a blind date arranged by her older brother, Dave. It was love at first sight, and they were married on Valentines Day in 1953. Mary is survived by her husband, Dick, and six children: Barbara (husband Mitchell Markay), Honey (husband Tom Terrill), Cathy, Daniel, David, and Michael (wife, Julie O’Keefe), four grandchildren, Lachlan and Griffin Markay, Mary and Ryan Cosgrave, and her sister Elizabeth (Mitzi) Halkerston.
Funeral Mass for Mary will be held at St. Jerome Catholic Church, 995 South Silver Lake Street in Oconomowoc on Wednesday, September 3, 2014 at 1:00 PM. Visitation will be from 11:00 AM until the time of the Mass, all to be held at the church. Mary will be laid to rest at LaBelle Cemetery in Oconomowoc following the Mass.
Donations in Mary’s name can be made to the Oconomowoc Area Foundation, 101 West Pleasant Street #210, Milwaukee, WI 53212 or online at
Pagenkopf Funeral Home is serving the family. For more information, call 262-567-4457 or visit www.pagenkopf.com.
Pagenkopf Funeral Home, 1165 E. Summit Ave., Oconomowoc