Washington communities remember former Microsoft executive Bill Henningsgaard for his “authentic, caring commitment to this world” through his “all-in” contribution of “heart, mind, and soul” in his services to the community, according to Social Venture Partners.
“There are hundreds of people that have a story about Bill – when he went the extra mile, when he knew just the right thing to say, how he would never give up. He was truly all-in for this community, heart, mind, and soul,” wrote SVP board.
Henningsgaard and his son, Maxwell, died Friday in a plane crash in East Haven, Connecticut, where two children, ages 1 and 13, on the ground were also killed. According to CBS New York, National Transportation Safety Board Investigator Robert Gretz said there were casualty reports of two or three people in the plane and two or three on the ground.
The father and son duo left the West Coast on Monday to tour colleges on the East Coast and New Haven was on itinerary. He was flying out of Teterboro Airport in New Jersey and tried to land at Tweed-New Haven Airport but was unable to for unknown reasons, according to Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). The plane was attempting a second landing when it crashed into two homes in East Haven at 11:25 a.m., engulfing both houses in fire.
The Seattle-based pilot was the son of former Astoria Mayor Edith Henningsgaard-Miller and brother of City Attorney Blair Henningsgaard. Having worked 14 years for Microsoft as Vice President, he also served as board directors for social service organizations Eastside Path and Youth Eastside Services. He was also the treasure of his church council, according to his bio on SVP’s website.
Henningsgaard is survived by his wife and daughters, Susan Sullivan, Eleanor and Lucy. His education included an undergraduate degree at Harvard, post-graduate education at the University of Oslo, Norway, and an M.B.A. from Stanford.
East Haven United Church will host Saturday night a vigil for the plane crash victims at 7pm. The town is not unfamiliar with tragedies as Sandy Hook Elementary school massacred last year took place in their neighboring city Newtown.