The Smithville Foundation is honored to announce the 2017 inductees into the Distinguished Alumni Wall of Fame. The official induction will occur on Thursday, February 23, 2017 prior to the start of the Warrior Varsity basketball game. This year's inductees are D. Ward Hanks and Howard McHenry.
D. Ward Hanks graduated from Smithville High School in 1939. Just a few of the accomplishments and honors of Mr. Hanks include: Smithville High School star football player and 440-yard dash runner, United States Air Force Bronze Battle Star recipient, recipient of the Air Medal with 13 Oak Leaf clusters, recipient of the George Hixon Fellowship Award from Kiwanis International, and President of the Smithville Board of Education at the time the land was purchased where the south campus is located.
In his life-long occupation of funeral director, Mr. Hanks had a powerful effect on individuals in the community during their time of personal stress. He devoted his life to serving the Smithville community and school district.
Howard McHenry graduated from Smithville High School in 1947. Just a few of the accomplishments and honors of Mr. McHenry include: musician, athlete on Smithville High School’s championship football, basketball and baseball teams, Eagle Scout, President of Kansas City Chiefs Club working with Lamar Hunt on NFL 2-point conversion rule, Mayor of Harrisonville, International Shrine Ward of Merit recipient, and writer and publisher of several books including “Ways to Win”, “First a Dream”, “Family Loss” books, “Modernize to Recovery”, and “Small Town America Community Development Manuals”.
At Smithville High School, Mr. McHenry was a dreamer. He dreamed of becoming a band leader and someday owning an automobile dealership. He achieved both of these dreams – musician and owner of McHenry Motors, Harrisonville, Missouri. Mr. McHenry currently serves as the CEO of CityMark. He recently shared that, “At SHS we learned to pray, respect our flag, country, family, share with others, apply common sense procedures and use good manners. We were taught to compete and to chase our dreams. Those are the teachings and fond memories I will leave on the SHS Wall of Fame.”
The induction of Mr. Ward and Mr. McHenry will make them the fifth and sixth members of the Alumni Wall of Fame. They will join the 2015 inductees: Mack Porter, Class of 1945; Robert Williams, Class of 1951; and John Dillingham, Class of 1956; and the 2016 inductee Collins F. (Colonel) Kindred, Class of 1939.
The Wall of Fame program is designed to recognize and honor Smithville School District graduates who have distinguished themselves and contributed to society in an exemplary fashion. Their successes will serve as motivation and inspiration to all associated with the Smithville School District.