Henry Benton Thorpe, III. February 11, 1961 – January 9, 2024. Henry Thorpe was born in Fredericksburg, Virginia. His father spent a career in the Army as an Infantry Officer and business entrepreneur in Rocky Mount, N.C. Henry grew up there and worked in the family business, Thorpe Music Company. He graduated from Northen Nash High School in 1979. He was a popular student who played on the football team as a defensive end (now defensive corner) and played the saxophone in the high school band.
Following graduation, Henry decided to follow in his father’s footsteps, and he joined the United States Army to become an Armored Reconnaissance Scout. After completing basic training at Fort Knox, KY, he was assigned to the 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment in Fulda, Germany. His outstanding service as a Border Scout led him to being selected for special assignment as the Enlisted Assistant/Driver to Regimental Commanders Col. John Sherman Crow and Col. Thomas E. White.
Upon completion of his three-year Germany tour, Henry was reassigned to Fort Ord, CA with the 7th Infantry Division, 2nd Squadron, 10th Air Cavalry Squadron as an Aero/Motorcycle Scout. During his tour, he signed-up for the Ranger Assessment and Selection (RASP) course at Fort Benning, GA and proudly graduated as an Army Ranger in Class 6-84.
Henry’s next assignment landed him at Fort Bragg, NC (now Fort Liberty), with the 82nd Airborne Division, 3rd Battalion (Airborne), 73rd Armor Regiment. Henry served in several positions within the battalion to include: Scout Section Leader, Scout Squad Leader, Assistant Operations Sergeant, and Armor Section Platoon Sergeant. Henry’s love of jumping out of perfectly good aircraft enabled him to achieve the highly coveted Jumpmaster Rating to ensure others survived their jumps.
During his Army career, Henry participated in the following operations: 1981 War Warning (Polish Uprising), Operation Golden Pheasant (1988), Just Cause (1989), and Desert Shield/Storm (1990/1991). Henry was Honorably Discharged from the Army in 1992 and moved to Tampa, FL. Henry maintained his lifelong dedication and selfless service to the Army as a member of 82nd Airborne Association and worked tirelessly as the Chairman of the Tampa Bay All Airborne Chapter of the 82nd Airborne Division Association. He will be remembered for helping others, sharing great stories of his adventures, his love of sports, and old movie classics.
In 2013, Henry earned a Bachelor’s degree in Management Information Systems from the University of South Florida and was immediately hired by Tata Consultancy Services as a Project Manager. Henry flourished at his job and employed his years of Army leadership skills by leading and mentoring others to be their personal best.
Henry is survived by his mother, Sharon; his sister Karen; his son, Henry; his wife of 18 years, Mary; his daughters Erika and Emily; and grandchildren Saoirse, Michael, and Monica. Henry was like a son to a few, a father to more, and a brother to all. He was loved and will be deeply missed.
A Celebration of Life will be held at American Legion Post 152, 11211 Sheldon Road, Tampa. Florida 33626 on February 17, 2024 at 1 p.m.