SouthPop Founder Henry Gonzalez Passed Away

Henry Outside The Center June 2010

SouthPop Founder Henry Gonzalez Passed Away

In Memoriam…

Henry outside the Center June 2010003
Obituary for Henry B. Gonzalez

Henry Gonzalez was born August 6, 1950, in Brownsville, Texas to a large and loving Latino family who have been residents of Tejas since before the US stole the territory from Mexico. He died on February 29, 2016 after an intense 16 month battle against cancer.

Growing up in Brownsville and Corpus Christi, Henry got to Austin as quick as he could in 1972. Although he attended several of Texas’ finest state schools he left academia to become an integral part of the Austin music scene, working at The Armadillo World Headquarters, the Austin Opera House and later touring and working for several national and local bands. He was an artist, stage hand, stage manager and mentor to the next generation. He recognized early on the importance of Austin’s music culture and in 2004 Henry was part of the founding group of the South Austin Museum of Popular Culture, where that unique culture is celebrated, and spent the rest of his life as the driving force of that organization.

He leaves behind an enormous number of friends and family, including his wife, Leea Mechling; son, Ben Gonzalez (wife, Margaret); daughter, Coree Alvarez (husband, Michael) and grandchildren Beck Ava Gonzalez and Royal Bennet Gonzalez.

A memorial service will be held on Sunday, March 20th at 1pm at the Zilker Clubhouse. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to Hospice Austin.

  1. Sara Rekstein12-29-2017

    I just booked a plane ticket to visit Austin for the first time in 5 years. I managed the Planet K and the post office and helped open the museum with Henry, Leea, and Carolyn. Carolyn, Alan, and I worked every party for years until I left. When I would be in town for visits…I’d still tend the beer bar at the parties. The last time I saw Henry, I went to see him because my dad had just killed himself in Elgin and I was collecting his things. Henry wasn’t always the best with words….I think it might have been the beers, but he comforted me in a way that a dad would and better than my friends could. I loved him very very much. I still managed to sling some beers at an opening that trip before heading back to Minnesota. I just searched his name to make sure I could still go to Planet K South and bring him a 6er to share with me… But hes gone. I can’t stop crying. Is his picture on his wall? Can I still stop by and have a beer with him? I really need to say goodbye. I arrive Feb 2 and leave Feb 11…I’m afraid that if the PK employees catch me crying and drinking a beer on Henrys stage I’ll end up spending the rest of my trip in jail…but I think it might be worth it. Peace and Love. Love the Leeah if anyone speaks to her. I feel so sad for their family. I love Southpop

  2. Megan Stillman03-07-2018

    Hi Sara. I know this response is a little late, as most of the comments we receive on our page are spam. But I just wanted to let you know that Henry is on the wall, and always will be, and you are always free to come by have a beer with him. Just stay off of PK’s porch/picnic table area, as it could cost them their TABC license, but if you tell them you’re just having a beer with Henry, I’m sure they’ll understand.

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