Henry Thomas Sledge

December 3, 1923 to December 19, 2000

Mr. Henry Thomas Sledge Sr. Age 77, a resident of Prattville, AL, died Tuesday December 19, 2000. Funeral services with full military honors will be held Thursday December 21, 2000 at 12:30 p.m. From Ridout's Prattville Chapel with Dr. Gorman Houston and Rev. Randy Greene officiating burial will follow at Greenwood Cemetery. Mr. Sledge retired from the United States Air Force after 28 years of service. A decorated veteran of World War II, Korea, and Vietnam, he received the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Purple Heart. Later in his Air Force career he served as Flight Engineer aboard a C-130 aircraft used in air rescue. Mr. Sledge was also retired from Alabama Power after 11 years. He donated much of his time to the Boy Scouts of America and was a long time member of the Prattville First Untied Methodist Church. Survivors include his wife, Beulah Sledge, one daughter and son-in-law, Karen Sledge and Jay Ott, Atlanta GA, two sons and daughters-in-law, Henry “Tommy” Sledge Jr., Ogden, Utah and James “Jimmy” and Faye Sledge, Andreea Smits, Jonathan Sledge, Brandon Ott, Rachel Ott, Dillon Ott, and Megan Ott. USAF Honor Guard will serve as active pallbearers. Honorary pallbearers will be Bruce Chriestenson, Brady Wimberly, Billy Cowart, Bryan Atker, Charlie Whitten, Marvin Hurst, and Woodrow Williams. The family will receive friends at the funeral home Wednesday evening 6-8 PM.

Date of Birth: December 3, 1923
World's Fair NYC - 1939
Military: United States Army Air Corps - World War II
Military: United States Air Force - Korea
Engagement: Beulah Pinson - May 1952
Wedding: Beulah Pinson - July, 26, 1952
Sons's Birth: Henry Thomas "Tommy" - April 28, 1953
Daughter's Birth: Karen - July 15, 1959
Military: United States Air Force - Vietnam
Son's Birth: James "Jimmy" - February 18, 1968
Military: United States Air Force Retirement - 1977
Alabama Power - 1977
Marriage of Daughter: Karen to Jay Ott - March 03, 1985
Alabama Power Retirement- 1988
Marriage of Son: Jimmy to Faye Minor – September 21, 1991
Date of Passing: December 19, 2000

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Military Honors - United States Air Force

Veteran of World War II, Korea, and Vietnam
Distinguished Flying Cross
Purple Heart

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"a better place"

Posted: Mar. 20, 2013Megan Ott

Grandpa, you left this world too soon and I really wish I had more memories to share. I do remember your gentle persona and how very intelligent you were; you were always known as a walking dictionary, and who doesn't love that? Grandpa, when you were here, you made the world a better place and we all miss you so much. I can't wait to see ya again.


Posted: Feb. 26, 2013Brandon Ott

Grandpa was a jovial guy. When asked how his food was, or how he was doing, he'd always sarcastically answer "horrible" with a slight grin. I picked this up from him and do it almost every day.

Early Years...

Posted: Feb. 26, 2013Karen Ott

I remember hearing this story growing up. Daddy left his home in Georgia in 1939 and headed for the Worlds Fair in New York. He literally put down his equipment out in the field, a hoe, and left without a word to anyone. He was only 15?? Everyone looked for him for some time. He found his way to New York, worked on and with horses for some rich man that took him in for a time. He could not of had two dimes in his pocket when he took off. Wow...
When he first entered the military, he lied about his age to sign up because he was too young.

“Church, Choir, Love, Marriage...”

Posted: Feb. 26, 2013Brandon Ott for Beulah Sledge

1950's - Burge Memorial Methodist Church in Montgomery, AL. Young Beulah Pinson was singing in the choir. Not only was the congregation enjoying the hymns, but Henry Sledge caught sight of Beulah. It's said he “knew” he'd marry her a soon as he saw her. It wasn't long before Beulah and Henry found themselves out for a drive with friends. Henry took the opportunity and leaned up from the back seat to ask Beulah out on their first date. Apparently there was an upcoming all night gospel where the Statesmen Quartet would be performing. The Statesmen Quartet was considered the most successful gospel quartet of the 1950s and Henry and Beulah wanted to see them. Beulah and Henry did get to see them and had a grand ole time. Of course it wouldn't be proper for Beulah to participate all night, so Henry took her home. The gospel must have been good, because Henry headed back and spent the rest of the night at the gospel.

Old Glory

Posted: Feb. 26, 2013Brandon Ott

Grandpa was a true patriot and great American. Few things got under his skin like disrespect for the "colors". He would regularly "inform" businesses and individuals about their improper use to the flag. On several occasions I remember him pulling into a parking lot and explaining to me the importance of what he was about to do. We'd go inside a business and let them know that their tattered flag was unacceptable. You'd be surprised how fast most people react when you nicely spell out their error on this subject.
Because of Grandpa's example I've done this more times than I can count. I've even cut down flags at stores that essentially laughed at my complaint. Thanks setting them straight Grandpa!

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bah humbug

Grandpa loved to act like he was grumpy and old, but he was so full of life. Bah Humbug was one of those things he'd say throughout the year (not just during the holidays), but everyone knew he was joking around.

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