Myles Henry of the Maine Diner dies suddenly

I read with sadness a link that Randy Garbin of Roadside Online posted on Facebook that Myles Henry of the Maine Diner died suddenly while on vacation in Marco Island, FL.

A recent photo posted on the Maine Diner’s Facebook page showing
left to right… Dick Henry & Myles Henry with former First Lady Barbara Bush
& former President George H.W. Bush

Myles, along with his brother Dick run one of the most successful diners anywhere! Although not a factory-built diner, the place has a very down-home kind of feel, just right for its namesake state. I have always said, that most diner owners/operators could take a lesson or two from the Henry’s on how to run a diner!

Here is the copy (and link to the Seacoastonline piece on Myles’ untimely passing, written by Casey Sullivan……

WELLS, Maine — Fifty-four-year-old Myles Henry, co-owner of the Maine Diner, died Friday, Dec. 3, in Marco Island, Fla., after apparently having passed out and hit his head in a restaurant bathroom, according to multiple sources.

While Henry’s official cause of death is yet to be determined by the District 20 Medical Examiner’s Office in Florida, Henry’s wife, Trisha Henry, said the longtime local business owner was born with two heart deformities — a bicuspid aortic valve and Wolf Parkinson White syndrome — which she said could have led to a heart attack.

Henry and his brother, Dick Henry, had purchased what is now the Maine Diner off Route 1 in 1983, and the establishment has been thriving ever since.

“He was loved by so many people,” Trisha Henry said in a phone interview Sunday. “It’s just unbelievable how many friends he had.” She said her husband had been vacationing in Florida with three friends at the time of his death, and was found unconscious in the bathroom of Da Vinci Ristorante Italiano at 599 South Collier Blvd., Marco Island.

“He came in, sat at the bar, had one drink and then went to the bathroom,” Da Vinci owner Louigi Carvelli said of the moments before restaurant staff found Henry on the bathroom floor Friday night and called 911.

Marco Island police declined to comment on the matter Sunday.

Trisha Henry said there had been a moment when emergency medical responders had arrived on scene Friday night, and, upon coming back to consciousness, Henry had said, “Call Trish, call Trish, call Trish.”

Billy Egan, Myles Henry’s lifelong friend who had accompanied him on his vacation in Florida, said Sunday he could not have pictured a more perfect day for the man to have lived before he died.

“He was happy,” Egan said, making note that the group of friends — Egan, Henry, Rick Finks and Rick Sawyer — had played a “good round” of golf earlier that day. “We played 36 holes and then we had a great dinner and watched the Celtics that night.” Henry had later traveled to Da Vinci’s because he was meeting up with another friend he had in the area, Egan added.

Egan became choked up when he said the only thing that could have been better about Henry’s last day was a little better weather, and if he could have spoken to his wife one last time.

The group of friends had vacationed to Florida together biannually for the past 18 years, Egan said.

After news of Henry’s death hit Wells on Sunday, his friends, family and Maine Diner staff reacted in a mixture of shock and sorrow.

“First and foremost, he was a mentor to me,” said Maine Diner manager Jim MacNeill. “He had a zest for people, and life, and having fun. When people pressed him with needs — whether it was for charitable contributions or for friends in need — he was always there for people.”

According to Trisha Henry and Bibber Memorial Chapel staff, arrangements have been made for visiting hours from 6 to 9 p.m. Friday, Dec. 10, at Bibber Memorial Chapel. A memorial service will follow at noon, Saturday, Dec. 11, at the Coastal House on Route 1.

I personally met Myles at least 3 times, the first being at my one and only appearance on the Phantom Gourmet TV show approx. 10 years ago.  The last time being 5 or 6 years ago when Denise & I stopped at the diner on the way to Old Orchard Beach in Maine. The place was bustling as usual and we had to take a pager and wait a few minutes. We actually were able to get a seat at the counter within a short time and ordered a couple of their fabulous deserts. We went to pay when we were finished only to find out that Myles had got the check for us!

I want to extend my condolences to the Henry family on their loss.

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