As most of you know, my daughter, Azteca, is married to Thomas J. Henry. Now, my friends in Europe and abroad may not know that name, but, here in Texas, he’s a big deal, a really big deal, actually. So big in fact that I, even in prison, hear stories about him.
Tom is a lawyer, one of the best in the whole damned country; not my words, but the words of the folks who monitor that kind of stuff – you can look that up on the Internet, but trust me, he’s a monster in the court room, and had he been my lawyer in Fed Court, I wouldn’t be here right now. Anyway, the first time I met Tom was, near about 19 or 20 years ago. I had just been found “Not Guilty” by a jury in San Antonio Texas and was being held in the County Jail in Corpus Christi Texas waiting for the Federal Government of the United States to pick me up so, THEY, could take me to trial, again – yeah, for the same murder I had just been found Not Guilty of in Texas … long story, short answer: The feds don’t have to follow the law! Trust this: if the Federal Government wants to convict you of something, they will break any law, or violate any Constitutional Right to do it … like take a man to court and convict him, even after, he’s been found NOT GUILTY of that same crime in a previous trial. FYI: evidence of my innocence is out there, just waiting to be found! Remember me saying this!
It was during this brief stay in the Corpus Christi jail that Tom came to visit me … Now, I knew that he’d been dating my daughter, and I wasn’t very happy about it. For one thing, he was 12 years older than her, or there about. He was divorced, and, according to the lady Private Investigator working my case, he was also deeply in debt! So when they shackled me hand and feet, and took into the room where he sat, on a Lawyer visit, I was, well, probably, for the afore stated reasons, not very friendly … that and he was last person I expected to see that day.
Tom introduced himself, and after a few minutes of less than friendly talk, he told me that he wanted to marry my daughter! Now Tom says that I replied, “You do know that if I wasn’t in jail, you wouldn’t be dating my daughter!” or something to that affect. I must admit, I don’t remember saying that, but it does sound like something I would’ve said, so I’ll own it, because that’s definitely what I’d been thinking. To make a long story short, they did marry, had two great kids and are happily married these 19 or 20 years later.
Like I said, Tom’s a big deal, now. He has been a great husband to my daughter, a great father to their children, and has, well, very obviously, worked himself out of the debt he incurred by starting his own Law Firm. Like I have said before, Tom’s a big deal and being that I’m his father-in-law people, who don’t know him except on TV, sometimes say things off the cuff to me about him. For instance: People have made comments about being tired of seeing his commercials on TV … I always reply, with a smile, ” Yeah, nobody likes a Personal Injury Lawyer, until somebody kills their kid!” One of the other things people make comments about, concerning him, is his height … Tom is 5″8″ inches tall, not short, but not tall either. So every now and then, someone will, on the sly, try to put him down over it, so they’ll say to me, ” I saw you son-in-law the other day … ” then they’ll add, ” How tall is he?”
I realize that some people are jealous of him, even if they themselves don’t realize it. So, whenever someone walks up to me and says, ” I saw your son-in-law the other day … How tall is he?” I ALWAYS respond, “I don’t know, but I know he’s real tall when he stands on his wallet!” That always ends the conversation. I suppose what I’m trying to say is that I’ve come to not only like my son-in-law, but I’ve learned to respect the man he is. And the man he is, is good to my daughter – I mean he gives her all the attention she deserves, and all she has to do is, act, like she wants something, and goes and finds it for her. He’s loyal to her and their kids. He works seven days a week and is a machine when it comes to his trade. He has built, from scratch, one of the biggest, and certainly the best, Law Firms in Texas. He’s kind and good hearted – I have to pause here and tell you a little inside story.
For those of you who don’t know, it never snows in South Texas, where we live… well hardly ever, we did have snow on the ground some twenty two years ago, but I mean just a thin scathing of coverage, coverage that barely stuck. So Tom, being the kind-hearted soul he is, decided this past December, that he’d get a snow machine and have it hauled around to the local communities and blast snow, so that the kids, most of whom have never seen snow, could have a snow experience for Christmas. Of course, you all know, we had a freak winter storm and it snowed hard, all over South Texas! So poor Tom was left with a hefty expenditure he couldn’t even use, nor recuperate his sizable investment … but his heart was right, he was trying to give the underprivileged kids a Christmas to remember! God Bless him.
My son-in-law, Tom, is a huge philanthropist, another thing you may not know about him is, every year, Tom buys thousands upon thousands of turkeys that he and his family, my family, personally goes and gives away to the poor on Thanks Giving Day. Yep, Tom and his family go out to these communities and passes them out to all comers. Of course, he does this to help the poor, the folks who wouldn’t otherwise have a turkey dinner on Thanks Giving Day, and, as you would expect, a lot of people who CAN afford to buy their own turkeys show up for a free handout; Tom never complains, he just smiles and wishes them all a happy holiday; Tom never asks anything in return. God Bless him!
Awhile back Tom and my daughter came to visit and Tom was reflecting on how much he’d changed, for the good, in the last twenty years. As I watched him, and listened to him, I could see and hear the sincerity in his voice, and I could only smile and be grateful for him. Tom has given my entire family the life I could only dream about giving them. I will add here, that everyone knows that his father-in-law is in prison, and never once has he acted ashamed of me, nor has he ever tried to make himself look better by putting me down – me, the only negative in his otherwise perfect life, God Bless him for that!
Tom and my daughter have a Reality Show on You Tube called “Hanging with los Henry’s” and in this show they open up their life and home, to the viewers. In the show Tom has allowed my daughter, her mother and his own children to be the stars; he plays the hardworking, good hearted, fun-loving dad. In the show and in real life, he gets ragged on by the kids and his wife, in a loving way, of course. I understand this, because in our family, the husband, father, me at the time was constantly ragged on by my wife and kids; the butt of all jokes. Teresa and my children, especially my daughter, never, ever let up. They clowned me, made fun of my hair, my clothes, my music, the way I talk and everything else you can imagine. They chastised me for being kind-hearted most of all. And I always understood that they picked on me, because they loved me, and in reality, I actually enjoyed the attention. But it takes a certain type of man to allow that without getting a complex – or committing suicide! It takes a man who’s comfortable with his masculinity, one who’s not caught up in his own ego. I was that man, Tom is that man, one better. God Bless him.
Yeah, you’re damned right, I have a load of respect for my son-in-law. He’s proven himself to be the man that I, as a young father, actually knelt by my daughter’s bed and prayed would come into her life. Here’s something else for you to think about. My daughter was in school in Austin when I was arrested. As a result of that, she transferred back to Corpus Christi so that she could be close to her ma and I, during my upcoming trials. It was during this time that she met and married Tom.
During this same time my two sons, due to the pressures of seeing their father on the news every night, quit school before graduating. Seeing this, Tom gets them both together and puts them to work in his Law Firm. During his time at Tom’s Firm my son Marco met and married Cindy, who was also, at that time, working in Tom’s Law Firm and they now have a happy marriage and three kids together. Marco went on, at Tom’s enticement, to get his GED, go to Law School and has now become a bad-assed Lawyer himself.
The point to all this is: none of this would have happened if I had not been arrested, because like Tom says, “You wouldn’t be marrying my daughter if I wasn’t in jail!”, that, and my daughter would have stayed in Austin and they’d never have met. Crazy, right! The thing, my arrest, I thought was the worst thing to ever happen to me, turned out to be the best thing that ever happened to my family, and that makes it the best thing that’s ever happened to me. So, the next time someone says something negative or unflattering about Thomas J. Henry, remember this: He deserves everything, he got in this life. God Blessed him.
Virgin de Guadalupe Painting.
I did finish it, today, actually. And true to my vision I was able to p[portray her in such a way as to not take away from her status as a religious icon, yet turn her into a beautiful piece of art. Of course I kept in mind as I created her that she was a mother, first, and that as a mother, she had witnessed her son horribly murdered. So as I brought her to life I tried to paint not only her iconic status but as a woman, so I tried to show, a woman’s, a mother’s pain in her face. I did remain true to myself as I painted her, so she’s a Lilith painting; if you know anything about my work, you know what I mean by that. But, at any rate, she is beautiful and I am proud of her. I hope to be able to show you a picture of her one day.
That little varmint is spoiled, nothing changed there. One of my readers, Rae Lee, said that if I shared my Thanks Giving meal with him I must really love him … I hate to admit it, but I really do enjoy his company … but he’s still a brat … in fact I was brushing him yesterday and he got frisky and nipped me on the arm, drew a little blood too … WHAT! NO I wasn’t touching him inappropriately! This ain’t Hollywood! He’s just a brat!
Anna and Eddie. Always good to hear from you guys. I know that you sent me a picture, but I haven’t received it yet.
When I do, I’ll holler, Thanks.
Karla: Thanks for the kind words. Peace be with you.
Rae Lee: I remember you as a kid and it boggles my mind that you and so many others, who were kids when I was locked up, have taken the time to remember me. I’m happy to hear from you after all these years.
Cheto y Maya: Glad to hear from you. Your sister has stayed in close contact with me, she is well and was happy to hear that you had made contact. Love you guys, Tio Mark
As always I ask you to pass this entry along to your friends, and as always, thanks for taking the time to read this mess! Peace be with you. Mark
Three Rivers, 1-10-18