Rotary honors Earl Hendry’s half-century of service

10:38 am | January 16, 2014
Photo by Brandon Hicks

Earl Hendry was recognized for 50 years of service to Rotary.

He is a lawyer, columnist and historian, but Roan Mountain resident Earl Ronald Hendry is most proud to be a Rotarian.

And he’s had plenty of practice: the Rotary Club of Elizabethton honored Hendry on Wednesday for his 50 years of service.

“What a pleasure it has been to be a member of this club,” Hendry said. “I appreciate the honor.”

Hendry first joined Rotary in December 1963, but it was in Memphis where he studied law.

“It’s the most important thing I’ve ever done besides church,” Hendry said about his Rotary service.

He served as editor of the Collierville Herald, which was a weekly newspaper at that time.

“That’s how I worked my way through the last two years of law school,” he said. “Being the editor, they asked me to join Rotary and that was my first experience with it. I’ve been a Rotarian ever since at one place or the other.”

These are the Rotarian four-way test questions Hendry said he relies on when he has a problem to solve: Is it the truth? Is it fair to all concerned? Will it build goodwill and better friendships? Will it be beneficial to all concerned?

“The motto is, ‘He profits most who serves best,’” Hendry said. “And the four-way test works when you’ve got a problem about what’s the right thing to do. If you apply that test, you always find a solution.”

Charlie Long, president of the Elizabethton Rotary Club, said it has been a privilege to serve the community alongside Hendry.

“He brings so much to the club,” Long said. “We can always count on Earl to embellish a good story.”

Even after 50 years of service, Long said Hendry’s dedication has not wavered.

“He is all about getting things done and seeing good things happen in the community through the club,” Long said.

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