Carolyn Henshaw

Carolyn Henshaw

Passed: March 19, 2023
Charleston, WV

Carolyn Henshaw

Passed: March 19, 2023
Charleston, WV


Carolyn Henshaw, 78, of Charleston, West Virginia, passed away on March 19, 2023 of a brain tumor.

Daughter of Erma and William Griffith, Carolyn grew up with an appreciation of literature and language instilled by her principal and English teacher father. She followed in her father’s footsteps as an educator, first as a substitute teacher and later, after receiving a Master’s Degree in Special Education, as a Special Education Teacher. Carolyn taught all over Kanawha County and beyond at Horace Mann, Stonewall Jackson, Capital High, Riverside, St. Albans, John Adams, Sissonville, and finally George Washington. Carolyn brought appreciation, curiosity, and humor to her work as a Special Ed, Behavior Disorder and Traumatic Brain Injury Educator. She genuinely enjoyed all her students and fellow teachers and constantly strove to be a better teacher.

The curiosity and joy Carolyn brought to her job as a teacher was echoed in her life. She loved to travel and study different cultures, especially Asian culture and art. Her interest in travel was sparked by her late husband, Harry Henshaw, who took her on a life changing honeymoon trip in Africa and Europe that she thought of often with sweetness and gratitude. Her travels continued later, this time with friends and her daughter, Elizabeth “Betsy” Henshaw-Railla, traveling to Scotland, Ireland, Wales, Mexico, Tahiti, and many much-loved trips to the beach. Her love of the ocean began during her time living in Hawaii, which was a touchstone of relaxation and happiness throughout her life.

In addition to her love of the beach, Carolyn and Harry shared a love of dogs, small and large. Early in their marriage, they raised hunting dogs, Carolyn taking great care in training the dogs not to be gun shy and well-mannered. She often said, “It’s not a home if there isn’t a dog!” She is survived by her beloved Scottish Terriers, Duncan and Archie, who were the apple of her eye. After retiring as a teacher, she devoted herself to the enjoyment of everything she loved in her life – dogs, friends, travel, gardens, and home decor. She lived with gratitude, positivity, and appreciation.

Carolyn’s memorial service will be held at 4:00 p.m. on Saturday, April 22, 2023, at St. Matthews Episcopal Church, Charleston, West Virginia, where she spent years serving on the alter guild.

Carolyn is survived by her daughter, Betsy Henshaw-Railla, and son-in-law, Nathan Railla.

Memorial donations should be directed to the Mid-Atlantic Scottish Terrier Rescue –

Memorial Service

  • Date & Time: April 22, 2023 (4:00 PM - 5:00 PM)
  • Venue: St. Matthew's Episcopal Church
  • Location: 36 Norwood Road Charleston, WV 25314 - (Get Directions)
  • Phone Number: (304) 343-3837

Mid-Atlantic Scottish Terrier Rescue

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3 responses to Carolyn Henshaw

  1. Betsy, I am so sad to hear of your Mom’s passing. Mark and I loved both of your parents. They touched our lives in so many ways. They were very proud of you! Prayers surround you.

  2. Elsa Colston says:

    I met Carolyn when I introduced Susan Sites to Erma, her mother. Erma had been my home health client when I was a PTA.
    My next encounter with Carolyn was when she contracted me to work with her husband Harry after his illness. we touched base from time to time on fb messenger.
    I was able to be part of Carolyn’s care team in the last weeks of her life.
    I admired and respected Carolyn and am thankful we shared some laughter with one another.

  3. Betsy, I am so saddened to learn of sweet Carolyn’s passing. She was such a kind, gentle lady. I helped her buy that house (good friends and Realtor). We had so much fun looking for it and dealing with all the idiosyncrasies of buying it. I had no idea that the cancer had come back and am so sorry that I didn’t have a chance to say goodbye. I’ll see you at the services on the 22nd. If you need any help with house, please let me know. Again my sincere condolences.

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