Henry Parker Jr. was born in Weeksville, NC, the son of the late Nellie Mae Davis and Roscoe Parker. He had 10 brothers and sisters, where they grew up and all worked on the family farm. He is survived by his wife of 60 years Joy Williams Parkers, sons, Clif (wife Christy) Parker of Hookerton, NC, Henry "Hank" (wife Missy) Parker III of Indianapolis, Indiana, and one daughter Gwyn (husband Wayne) Rice of New Bern, NC. Two grandsons Phillip (Melanie) Rice and Colby (Blake) Rice of New Bern. Additionally, he is survived by five great-grandkids Lillian, Hunter, Cali, Theodore, and Shelby and by two siblings, sister Kathryn James of Weeksville and brother Richard (wife Sandra) Parker of Weeksville, and many nieces and nephews.
Henry graduated from Weeksville High School located in Pasquotank County, NC in 1956 and went on to serve 4 years in the US Air Force. After an honorable discharge from the US Air Force in 1962, he continued his air traffic control training and worked for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) briefing pilots and directing air traffic for 30 years before retiring in 1989 as Chief of the New Bern, NC Facility. Henry loved the outdoors, deer hunting during the seasons and fishing whenever time allowed. After retiring from the FAA in 1989, Henry took to commercial fishing with his two sons on the Neuse and Trent Rivers. Henry and his two sons (Jon Clifton Parker & Henry "Hank" Parker) crafted the name Jon Henry's Seafood, and went on to fish nets and work crab pots catching blue crabs, selling to local individuals and wholesalers for over 30 years.
He was an active member of First Baptist Church, New Bern, NC. He had served in several areas of the church including the Senior Adult Program and Café Connection greeting and getting to know people. He was a member of the New Bern Shriners Masonic Society.
During the winter months and in his spare time, you could often find him in his backyard shop carving and painting shore birds, various species of fish and animals and building wood crafts such as airplanes and boats. Most of his crafts were often sold at local flea markets or given away to young kids whom admired them. If he wasn't working in the woodshop, he enjoyed reading. His favorite books were about history, aviation, and politics.
Henry never met a person he didn't try to get to know and never forgot anyone's name. It wouldn't take but a couple of sentences into a conversation before he's ask individuals where they were from and what they did. And afterwards, he would remember them the next time he met them.
The family will receive visitors from 6:00-8:00 PM at First Baptist Church in the Family Life Center on Monday, March 28, 2022. A Celebration of Life will be held on Tuesday, March 29, 2022 at 11:00 AM in the sanctuary at First Baptist Church.
In lieu of flowers memorial donations in honor of Henry can be made to First Baptist Church, New Bern, NC to the Senior Adult Ministry.
Cotten Funeral Home is honored to serve the family of Henry Roscoe Parker, Jr.