Father Albert J. Henkel may have had a premonition of his death, his long-time secretary said.
Jean Larison, who has served nearly 20 years as Holy Ghost Parish secretary, said that just hours before he died Dec.
26, Father Henkel gave her a list of things he wanted her to do.
Father Henkel had been admitted to St. Mary's Medical Center three days earlier suffering from double pneumonia.
She said that with tubes in his thoat it was difficult for him to speak, so she suggested that they wait until the
next day before making the list of things to do. But the priest was gruffly insistent, telling her, "I need to tell
you some things I want you to do . . .Jean you've got to listen to me." He told her to sit on the side of the bed so
she could hear him.
She said he told her what bills to pay, where he kept certain important documents he was keeping for other people, house
keys that parishioners had entrusted to him, money he had put back to pay on people's funerals, etc.
Mrs. Larison took down all the information then went home to eat dinner. While at home, a nurse called
from the hospital with the news that Father Henkel had died of a heart attack.
Did he know he was going to die? "I really do think so," Mrs. Larison said.
She said that Father Henkel on an earlier occasion had had a dream that was like what many people have described
in the so-called "near-death" experiences.