Cover photo for Gary W. Henrie's Obituary
Gary W. Henrie Profile Photo

Gary W. Henrie

March 25, 1941 — December 18, 2023


Gary W. Henrie

Hastings resident Gary W. Henrie, 82, passed away Monday, December 18, 2023, at Bryan Medical Center West, Lincoln, NE, after a brief illness and a longer skirmish with dementia.


A Celebration of Life will be at 3 p.m. Thursday, January 4, at Butler Volland Chapel in Hastings with Mary Ann Warner officiating. There will be no book signing or visitation. Memorials are suggested to the University of Nebraska Foundation (Kearney) for the Gary and Susan Henrie Scholarship in Social Work or the Listening Room. The service will be live-streamed on Livingston Butler Volland Funeral Home’s website. To view the service, go to Gary’s obituary and click the play button shown towards the bottom of the page.


Gary was born in Brigham City, UT, the oldest child of Winn and Beth Henrie and grew up in Tremonton, UT, on a farm-ranch operation. He graduated from Bear River High School in 1960 and was the state champion for bulldogging. He competed in the national high school championships in bull riding and bareback riding, placing in both. He wisely decided to pursue college instead of rodeo; but he was always a cowboy.


He graduated from the University of Utah; a member of Kappa Sigma fraternity. He received his Master in Social Work (MSW) degree from Syracuse University) in 1970.


He married Carolyn Karsten, and they had two sons, Brad and Craig. After graduate school, he moved to Montgomery, NY and worked for the Orange County Department of Mental Health in Goshen, NY. In 1977, He moved to Franklin, NE to pursue his career at South Central Behavioral Services where he served in various positions and as CEO from 1991-2009. He fully retired in 2015.


Gary was kind, funny, compassionate, visionary and his biggest role was as a mentor and coach for staff at South Central. He also could be a bit arrogant, a little salty and thought he knew everything, which he usually did. He was a tireless advocate for mental health, substance use and foster care, participating in a number of statewide organizations-but his primary focus was the Nebraska Association of Behavioral Health Organizations (NABHO). He served as president the organization and was instrumental in bringing the separate state mental health and substance use providers together under one umbrella. He taught staff that the best way to ensure behavioral health services was through legislative advocacy.


Gary married Susan O’Brien October 6, 2000 bringing her daughter, Rachel into the family. They liked to travel, garden, attend the Lied and Listening Room events and spend time with family and friends.


Gary played football, baseball and wrestled in high school and taught skiing for the University of Utah. He was a fan of Nebraska volleyball and football, loved March Madness and the Boston Red Sox. Gary was an avid bird hunter and fly fisherman. He played racquetball, bicycled throughout Nebraska and practiced Yoga.


He is survived by his wife, Susan; sons, Brad (Melissa) of Juniata and Craig of Montgomery NY; step-daughter, Rachel Haynes of Hastings; and grandchildren, Evan Adler and Emma Miller, Allie and Jordan Henrie, Silas, Shepherd and Willow Haynes; and his brother, Ron (Pam) of Ogden, UT.

He was preceded in death by his parents; brother, Doug; sister, Dianne; his beloved mentor and father-in-law, Herb Karsten; and mother-in-law, Agnes Karsten; and Susan’s parents, Gene and Angela O’Brien.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Gary W. Henrie, please visit our flower store.

Past Services

Celebration of Life

Thursday, January 4, 2024

3:00 - 4:00 pm (Central time)

Livingston Butler Volland Funeral Home & Cremation Center

1225 N. Elm Street, Hastings, NE 68901


Click to watch

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