OBITUARY: Henry Warren Rees


Henry Warren Rees, age 97, passed away peacefully on Thursday, February 15, 2024, at Pavilion Senior Living Center in Lebanon, TN, in the presence of loved ones.

Warren was born in Cleveland, Ohio, to parents, Henry A. Rees and Ethel Batke Rees on April 28th, 1926. He graduated from University School in Shaker Heights, Ohio, and earned his BS in chemical engineering from Case Western Reserve.

Warren was a veteran of two wars, serving in the Merchant Marine during WWII delivering troops to the Pacific front and was a corporal in the Korean War as part of the US Army Chemical Corps while stationed at Fort McClellan in Anniston Alabama.

While living in Baton Rouge, LA, he was an active leader and parent with Boy Scouts of America. He was also a patron and sponsor of the Dixie Jubilee Horse Show.

Warren was a natural born salesman. He could sell sand at a beach. After a distinguished career at Shell and Ethel (New Market) in chemical sales and marketing, he went on to be an entrepreneur as owner, operator of two businesses: Broaster of Louisiana and Bar-B-Q Systems in northern LA. He tried his hand at being a restaurant owner in New Orleans, but he soon learned that absentee ownership was not a good business model.

Warren had a very strong work ethic. He worked well into his eighties and thought nothing of driving hundreds of miles to pick up and deliver a barbecue smoker or attend a food show. He was a volunteer as part of the Auxiliary at Northern Louisiana Medical Center in Ruston, La.

Warren loved his wife, his family, his church, God, and his country life in rural La. He had a big heart for his dogs. It did not matter what kind. He loved them all. He saw no difference between his purebred black labrador hunting dogs, the numerous German Shepherd family pets that he had over the years, or the stray that “adopted” him! Warren was a “foodie” before the term was coined. He loved cooking and eating out at fine dining establishments.

Warren embodied Louisiana’s sportsman’s paradise slogan. He was an avid hunter. He enjoyed both duck hunting and deer hunting. He loved fishing, so much so that he built and stocked a pond on his property in northern Louisiana, which allowed him the opportunity to fish in his own backyard. He would proudly tell stories of his “business trips” out west in his younger days with clients that were, in essence, fly fishing trips.

Warren described himself as a gentleman farmer. He enjoyed gardening, tending his bees, caring for his walking horses, riding his golf cart surveying his property, and taking walks. He did not know how to do anything small, as indicated by the size of the vegetable gardens he planted. Later in life, he relished a competitive game of gin rummy and sitting in the sun.

He was a past member of University United Methodist Church in Baton Rouge, LA., of Lisbon United Methodist Church, and of Rocky Springs Baptist Church in Homer, LA, where he was a member of the men’s bible class. Warren also attended Lehman-Idetown United Methodist Church in PA. He was a member of the Gideon organization.

Warren is preceded in death by parents, Henry A. Rees and Ethel Batke Rees; loving wife, Jeannette Barbara Kiefer Rees; and son, Richard Warren Rees.

He is survived by daughters, Peggy Sullivan (Fred), Mary Micinski (Bob), and Jane Shoosmith (Tom); granddaughters, Elizabeth Sullivan (Kyle Witham) and Catherine Knight (Adam); and great-grandchildren, Charlotte Elizabeth Knight and Theodore Henry Knight.

In lieu of flowers, please donate to the charity of your choosing. A memorial service will be held on May 13th at Rocky Springs Baptist Church in Lisbon, LA.



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