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Lindsey Funeral Homes

473 South Main Street, Harrisonburg, VA

OBITUARY

Henry Clay Clark, III

May 21, 1953November 21, 2019

Henry “Clay” Clark III, 66, passed away on November 21, 2019. Clay was born on May 21, 1953 in Harrisonburg, VA to Henry C. Clark and Mary Ann Bradshaw Clark.

He was a graduate of Harrisonburg High School (1971) and earned his bachelor’s degree in economics (1975) and law degree (1978) from Washington and Lee University.

After graduating from W&L, he practiced general law in Harrisonburg for underserved populations for a number of years before starting a seafood business in Cape Hatteras, NC. He returned to Harrisonburg after 2 years where he worked with a group of community members to establish the Mercy House in 1988. On October 22, 1988 he was married to Margaret Calleran. In 1990, he transitioned to the restaurant business with the opening of Hank’s BBQ. Hank’s expanded to the Dayton Market, catering, and eventually opened a location in McGayhesville along with Thunderbird Diner.

As a longtime resident of Harrisonburg, it was important to Clay to build up the downtown area. His vision was to provide a community space where people could come together and enjoy food, music and art. In 2007, he opened Clementine Café and Ruby’s Lounge which went on to win numerous local awards.

He purchased the Wine Brother’s building in 2014 to expand this vision. His design of the space aimed to provide a place where people of all ages could gather and enjoy each other’s company. He installed an antique duckpin bowling alley, antique pool tables, and numerous other arcade games for Ruby’s arcade all while preserving the historic building. The renovation also included Agora market and loft apartments. Of all his accomplishments, Clay was most proud of his contribution to the community and the opportunity to mentor and provide employment to young people.

He was a true renaissance man known for his quick wit and wry sense of humor. His interests include design, music, art, playing and collecting guitars. He was passionate about eating and cooking all types of cuisine with family and friends. Another interest and longtime project of Clay’s was rebuilding a 1964 Jaguar E-Type. He loved living in the country outside of Harrisonburg with his family, dogs, chickens and pigs.

Clay is survived by his wife, Margaret Calleran Clark, and four children, Meghan, Martin, Patrick, and Molly Clark. His surviving family also includes brother, Jeffrey Clark, and his wife, Esther Clark, of Santa Fe, New Mexico as well as numerous aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents Henry C. Clark and Mary Ann Bradshaw Clark, and sister Susan Watt Clark.

In lieu of flowers, please donate in his memory to the SPCA or the American Red Cross (monetarily or by donating blood).

The family will welcome friends at Ruby’s Arcade on Monday, 11/25/2019 from 6:00-9:00 pm. A private interment will be held at a later date.

Online condolences may be sent to the family by visiting www.lindseyharrisonburg.com

Services

PREVIOUS SERVICES:

  • Visitation Monday, November 25, 2019

OTHER SERVICES:

  • A Private Interment Will Be Held At A Later Date

Memories

Henry Clay Clark, III

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Mary Ann Collins

November 30, 2019

Clay was married to my niece, Margie. Sadly, I did not have many opportunities to be in Clay's presence, but I agree with the obituary that he was, indeed, a renaissance man. For awhile he owned a bbq restaurant in Harrisonburg where JMU folks gathered. I know Lefty Driesell used to go in there. Maybe it was Hank's. We live in Chesapeake, so aren't familiar with all the various places Clay had a hand in. Anyway, my husband and I were traveling one time and we made a point to stop in there and have lunch. Delicious!!! Clay came out from the back and chatted with us for awhile even though he barely knew us. So friendly. I am so sorry for his dear family and I know Clay will be missed by many.

Judith Lehman

November 27, 2019

We shall all miss Clay. I came to know him when he hired me as a baker at Hank's. I am sorry that he's gone too soon and will miss our bread conversations and all of his generosity.

Bill Kramer

November 26, 2019

Clay and I went to HHS together and were friends with a large circle of others then and afterwards. Because of distance and
family and work responsibilities, we only saw each other infrequenty in these later years, most often at concerts or
at one of his eateries. Whenever we crossed paths at those
times, he always seemed particularly proud of his family.
To you, the family, I extend my heartfelt condolences. Losing
a loved one, especially when it seems too soon, is difficult. I pray you'll find solace and healing over time.

Luanne Austin

November 26, 2019

I'm glad now that I saw Clay last month at Clementine and spent a few minutes catching up with him. He told me about his health problems, but so graciously asked about me and my family too. He was one-of-a-kind.

Vince Newton

November 26, 2019

Clay, i remember playing pool with you on your own table in your cool 2nd floor apartment at Court Square, right across from Eddie's Broken Spoke. I remember your baby blue Jaguar. You and that car are captured forever on a feature video of Harrisonburg driving around Court Square. I'm grateful for our holiday and homecoming times together throughout the past decades, in RVA and the Burg, with our better halves - Margaret and Susan, and our collective passel of kids. I have loved watching our kids live and love and learn and grow. I know you're so proud of Meghan, Marty, Petey, and Molly. It was such a sweet surprise to see Meghan whenever Susan and i visited our girls at VT. I'm thankful that we always ate so well in your company, either in your Linville home (on Black Dog Lane, Ha Ha Ha!) or any of your restaurants. Here in RVA, you brought oysters and we fried them in cornmeal batter. You taught me how to make a proper roux. You and i made a routine of getting in the car and driving around, picking out the food and supplies for the evening. i loved when you shared your life stories, either about your time at U of R or on the Outer Banks or about your path to reaching your conclusions on the state of the world. You always questioned the proposed answers, and i agreed with you that there are no easy answers. The world is very clearly not black and white, but... gray. I know you're receiving my message when i tell you that you will continue to be with us, in your family and mine, when we get together. And we will miss your smile and your laugh so much. You are definitely the inspiration for my mustache... peace and love Brother, vince

Walt Graham

November 25, 2019

Requiescat in pace Clay.

Good memories of downtown H'burg and Jo's...

Jennifer and family (Jackson, Emma) Shanks Pray

November 25, 2019

Margaret and family: While it’s been many years, our kids grew up together at MES and we remember you all fondly. We are so sorry for your loss. Our thoughts are with you - if there’s anything we can do - please let us know!

Lisa and Harold Thacker

November 25, 2019

We are so sorry for your loss.
We got to know Clay, through Broadway Little League. He so supportive of Broadway Little League and the ball teams. He was such a giving person. He was always so friendly and talkative.

Judy and Jack Miller

November 25, 2019

Clay's uniqueness will reflect far into the future of what our Community embodies...Genuineness, Character and Caring. Clay's life journey has made such a difference.

Sharon Shoemaker Griffith

November 25, 2019

I knew Clay many moons ago. He taught me how to snow ski, took me to my first concert some good times. I hadn't seen him in many years. I'm so glad he found so many purposes for his life. My prayers to all of his fmaily

FROM THE FAMILY