Board of Mental Health Presents Proclamation to Hendrix Family
Photo Caption: L to R: Robert Landrum, Sarah Marshall and daughter Kate Marshall, Sandy Hendrix, Chrissie Hendrix, and Randel Hendrix
The Board of Mental Health recently presented the family of the late Dr. Randy Hendrix with a proclamation honoring him for his many years of service to the Mississippi Department of Mental Health. At a luncheon held at Ellisville State School, Renée Brett, director of ESS, welcomed Hendrix’s family and friends, as well as former directors of Ellisville State School and other guests, to the event.
“We’re very honored to host this occasion today,” she stated.
Robert Landrum, a member of the Board of Mental Health, spoke of Hendrix’s numerous accomplishments and the impact he had on those he worked with through the years.
“He was a friend to so many people,” Landrum stated. “He had so much influence over the entire department because he was their friend.”
Hendrix, who began his career in mental health at Ellisville State School in 1971, went on to become the director of North Mississippi Regional Center in 1975, at which time he was the youngest director of a major facility in the nation. Hendrix was appointed Executive Director of the Mississippi Department of Mental Health in 1986 and served in that capacity until his retirement in 2007, earning him the distinction of being the longest serving mental health director in the nation.
“He trained so many who became program directors,” Landrum said. “He was a mentor to almost the entire Department of Mental Health.”
Landrum went on to say that Hendrix was a leader who gained the confidence of state legislators and bridged the gap between clients, parents, legislators and people who worked in mental health.
“He was a tremendous bridge builder,” Landrum commented. “He wanted people to realize the importance of providing services for our clients. He didn’t want people put in institutions and hidden away.”
The proclamation was presented to the family to honor Hendrix for his “dedication and service to the citizens of Mississippi with intellectual and developmental disabilities, mental illness, substance abuse, and Alzheimer’s disease”. His wife, Sandy Hendrix, thanked Landrum and those in attendance for the gesture.
“I’m very appreciative that they recognized him and I’m very humbled,” she said upon receiving the framed document. “He loved the Department of Mental Health and felt it was his family. We’ve had a great bond with the Department of Mental Health.”