Henry Hayes – June 30

Henry V. Hayes, long-time resident of Pelham, NY, died on June 30, 2022, at age 91. He died peacefully with his wife and children at his bedside. He had been born at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, Georgia on August 7, 1930, to parents, George P. Hayes of West Chester, PA and Anne Nissiat Hayes of Lyon, France.

Henry grew up during the depression battling asthma for most of his childhood; an ailment that stayed with him in varying degrees for his entire life.

After attending high school in Decatur Georgia, he enrolled in Emory University where he searched through several academic disciplines until he found  Philosophy. This became his “major” and a continuing area of interest, study and inquiry throughout his life. He graduated with a B.A. degree in 1951. While attending Emory he met his future wife,  Louise  Hertwig (“Twig”).  They married in 1952, and were together for over 69 years.

Henry began a career in advertising/marketing with two local Atlanta firms and was soon hired by McCann Erickson in its Atlanta office where he worked primarily on the Coca Cola account and was involved in the introduction of several new beverages—Sprite, Fanta and Tab, among others. In 1964, McCann transferred him to its New York office and made him a Vice President in its spinoff agency, Marschalk, and Account Executive on the Coca Cola Allied-Brands account.

In 1970, he was recruited by PepsiCo  to build, train and run a sophisticated Media Department to insure the parent company, Pepsi Cola, and all its separate divisions and plants were able to spend their advertising dollars efficiently. He authored a text on Media Buying and taught its rules and techniques throughout those organizations and to many Advertising Agencies and Clubs.

During the early days of their marriage the Hayeses lived in a suburb of Atlanta, Marietta, Georgia, where their three children were born. In 1964 they moved to Pelham, New York. In Pelham, Henry became an active member of Huguenot Memorial Church where he was a Deacon and served on a number of committees.  As a Deacon he worked to expand the church’s  annual Blood Drive into a community-wide recruitment of donors of more than two-hundred pints of blood per year for New Rochelle’s Sound Shore Hospital.  He sang in the church choir and performed many years in the Huguenot “Cabaret” fund-raiser. In the Pelham community, Henry served in a number of leadership positions in the local Democratic Party and even ran unsuccessfully for local office as a Democrat. He was President of the Board of the Pelham Community Orchestra for the years of its short life.

A dynamic family man of laughter and cheer, Henry often played the piano for enthusiastic singing.  However in conversation he always encouraged serious inquiry and informed debate among family and friends.  He harbored and frequently expressed an aversion to idle chitchat. One family friend articulated, “He always made conversations more interesting.” He was a life-long learner, whose intellectual passions included Philosophy, History, Theology and Music of all genres from country to opera.

He was a fine piano player, with a superb ear for music. Henry also had a strong love of sports, particularly tennis and touch football. Spirited games of both, with family and friends, were an integral part of most of his adult life. He also enjoyed sailing, a skill that he passed on to each of his children.

Henry also had a powerful moral barometer and a strong sense of justice. He was an early supporter of the Civil Rights movement first in Georgia and then in New York. He returned to Georgia in 1968 to walk with Rev. C.T. Vivian at Martin Luther King Jr.’s funeral.

He is survived by his wife Louise, his sister Anne Berry, his children: Meredith Gifford (Wes), Jennifer Howland (Jacob) and Henry V. Hayes, Jr. (Sharon), grandchildren: Abraham Howland (Jessica), Michael Hayes, Nathaniel Howland, Matthew Hayes, Hayes Gifford (Caroline), Emma Gifford, great granddaughter Ada and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.

A service of remembrance will be planned for the early fall.

Editor’s note: This obituary was provided by the Pelham Funeral Home.