CHARLOTTE AMALIE — Vincent “Abijah” Henley, a “beloved” phys ed teacher, was only six weeks and four days into his retirement when died tragically after his scooter struck a rock at the side of the road in Estate Canaan on Sunday afternoon.
Henley, 59, retired from the Education Department on August 31 — after teaching with distinction for more than three decades, the department said today on Facebook.
“The VIDE has been made better because of Mr. Henley’s many contributions,” the department said.
VIDE said it “mourns the passing” of Henley, “a dedicated physical education teacher who served the department with fidelity for 32 years.”
Henley began his career with Education on August 29, 1990 at the Michael J. Kirwan Elementary School (now Gladys Abraham Elementary School) and was transferred to Lockhart Elementary School following the 2017 storms.
In 2019, Henley joined the Ivanna Eudora Kean High School Rays, where he remained until his retirement on August 31, 2022.
While Henley’s professional career was in physical education, he “enriched the lives of students and schools in the St. Thomas-St. John district in countless other ways,” VIDE said.
“From establishing a thriving aquaponics program at Gladys Abraham, to serving as a swim, track-and-field, and chess coach to students across the district, he is fondly remembered as a mentor, father figure and friend,” the department said.
“Mr. Henley was beloved and respected by his former students and colleagues,” VIDE added. “The Department of Education has been made better by his many contributions, and his legacy of love will live on. We extend sincere condolences to his children, the Henley family, and to all those who knew and loved him.”