Cover photo for Gloria Henderson's Obituary
1927 Gloria 2023

Gloria Henderson

September 24, 1927 — July 1, 2023

As the sun was rising over Hopewell Hospice House in Portland, OR early Saturday, July 1, 2023, as our loved one slept, God’s angel entered her room and gently carried her loving spirit to eternal rest.

Mrs. Gloria Maxine Henderson, who went by Maxine and was affectionately called “Mac” by family and friends, was born September 24, 1927, in Beaumont, TX to the late Johnny Sr. and Mary Monette. Her father called her “Macaroni.” She was the oldest of their five children. She also had an older half-brother. Maxine loved to dance and sing, which she did often, as a child on their front porch using a broomstick as a microphone.

While in Beaumont, Maxine attended Woodson Pipkin Elementary School (a school founded by a former slave) and graduated from Charlton-Pollard High School in 1945. In high school, she was a skilled baton-twirling majorette. After high school, she left Beaumont for Prairie View A&M University, about two hours away. She decided that it wasn’t for her and left the same day she arrived. She moved to Portland, OR in September 1945, and lived with her Aunt Gladys and Uncle Roy Thomas.

In 1947, Maxine met Willie Henderson, Jr. through her cousin Geneva’s husband James A. Mayes, Jr. James forgot his pants on the train where he and Willie worked. Willie dropped them off to James to meet Maxine. They married eventually and were life-long sweethearts, celebrating almost 56 years of marriage. They had four children. She was the godmother to James A. Mayes, III and Chyerel Mayes.

Maxine’s first job was at the segregated Ames Harris Neville Co. where she clipped cloth bags to be sewn. Her various other jobs included: Hirsch Weis (White Stag), hotel housekeeping, elevator operator, seamstress and lastly, private housekeeping for families who grew to love her.

She was a devoted member of First AME Zion Church, involved in various activities, and a member of the Order of the Eastern Star.

She was preceded in death by siblings Willie Monnet, Johnny Monette, Jr., Beatrice Williams, Melton Monette, and Virginia Whitfield, husband Willie Henderson, Jr., daughter Gloria Green-Wickliff, and granddaughter Leslie McDaniel.

Maxine leaves behind warm memories and a grateful family:
Sons Gregory (Nancy) and Anthony Henderson; daughter Mary (David) McDaniel; grandchildren Alisha Walsh, Tamisha (Adrian Lewis) Jefferson, Nia (Sione) Fifita, Justin (Jasmine) McDaniel; great-grandchildren Hevani, Valeti, Alilia, and Ana Pule’ Fifita; Malique, AJ, Carter, and London McDaniel and Mallory Lewis. She also leaves a host of nieces, nephews, and cousins to celebrate her life and honor her legacy.

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

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