January 30, 1981 - September 20, 2021
IN HONOR AND MEMORY OF HENRIETTE “HENNY” ZOUA MENDO Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his faithful servants. Psalm 116:15 A star, a rose, a jewel--what can be said of the incomparable Henriette Zoua Mendo. A sweet, kind, thoughtful and generous soul. She was patient yet firm, outspoken yet respectful, serious yet incredibly funny, resilient and strong yet fragile and vulnerable. She was an artist, a creative, deeply moved and admired all things natural, beautiful, colorful, motion and anything that reflected the essence of the Master’s expressed creation. Henriette could sweep you away with her spirit, the kind of person who you were grateful to have known, and effortlessly made you feel noticed, accepted, and loved. She was the apple of her family’s eye and extremely adored by so many friends and loved ones near and far. Her memory will long be with us as we remember and celebrate a life well-lived, a spirit that captivated, a youthful exuberance! Childhood and Education Henriette Zoua Mendo made her debut on January 30, 1981, at Hammersmith Hospital in London, England. The adorable fourth daughter and fifth child born to Papa Abraham Mendo and the late Maman Juliette Mendo. As the youngest of the Mendo clan, it was immediately obvious that Henny would stand out in the family. She was absolutely doted on and was blessed to be born into a large family. Henriette made her own mark; she was fiercely independent, and found her voice very early. In 1982, the Mendo family emigrated from England to the United States of America where Henriette lived out the rest of her years. She began pre-school at the Fillmore Center in Washington, D.C., at the age of two years old. When the family moved to Silver Spring, Maryland, she attended both Rosemary Hills Elementary School and Westland Middle School in Bethesda, Maryland. She also attended Nicholas Orem Middle School and graduated from Northwestern High School both in Hyattsville, Maryland. Henriette excelled in soccer and tennis. She was also a budding artist by this time and went on to pursue a degree in Fine Arts at Frostburg State University, Frostburg, Maryland. Henriette thrived in her studies and absolutely enjoyed college life. She was heavily involved in the Christian campus ministry and served as a volunteer with AmeriCorps, tutoring low-income children in Frostburg. As a college student, Henny put her braiding skills to work and started a side hustle braiding guys and girls' hair. During her time at Frostburg, Henriette developed many life-long friendships that she cherished and were extremely important to her up until her passing. She went on to graduate with a Bachelor Degree in Fine Arts. In recent years, Henriette shifted her focus to a holistic lifestyle and began her study in natural medicine. She enrolled at the Maryland University of Integrative Health to pursue a Master’s Degree in Integrative Medicine. Henny had a deep passion for all things natural and was always teaching and sharing her knowledge. Creative Artist After graduating from Frostburg State University, while honing her craft as a visual artist, Henriette worked as a waitress at several restaurants in the Washington, DC area. She also held exhibitions of her artwork and became very active in the art scene in the D.C. area. As a creative artist at heart, Henriette also took up dancing at Joy of Motion Dance Center in Washington, DC, and joined their Hip Hop company called DCypher. Henny toured and performed with DCypher at local and some national events and competitions. She absolutely loved expressing herself in dance and it became another one of her passions and joys in life. It opened doors of opportunity for her to work with and teach children at the Atlas Performing Arts Center in Washington, DC. Eventually, she went on to work as a Contractor at The Housing of Urban and Development (HUD) and as an Office Manager at the Olney Theatre Center in Olney, Maryland. Before her passing, she was employed as an Administrative Assistant in Publications IT for the American Chemical Society (ACS), Washington, DC. She was loved and adored by her co-workers at ACS not only for her professionalism, intelligence, and competence but also she had a way of bringing so much joy and sunshine to the office. Many who worked with her have described her as being kind, thoughtful, hard-working and demonstrating excellence in everything that she did in the workplace. According to the Assistant Director of Publications Technology, with whom Henny worked closely, “Henriette is a big loss to our company and her presence will be greatly missed.” Family and Religious Life As the youngest of five children, Henriette held a very special place in the hearts of her family. She had many nicknames her siblings gave her, some of which she was embarrassed to be called in public. As the baby of the family, Henriette had a very strong bond with her mom, the late and beloved Maman Juliette Zolo Mendo. During Maman Juliette’s battle with cancer, Henriette was there every step of the way helping and assisting in every way that she could. She was also known as Papa Abraham’s personal chauffeur, driving him around town to his various social activities and appointments. Her brother Nicolas and sisters, Sylvie, Pauline and Marthe all considered her a best friend and confidante. They could talk to Henriette about anything and she would listen attentively and lovingly without any judgement. She was always very supportive and encouraging to her siblings in whatever dreams or projects they were undertaking. You could always count on Henriette to be there. Henriette was also a very loving and caring auntie who doted on and spoiled her nieces and nephews. The youngest, Isabelle and David, would always gather in her room for hours spending time with her watching movies and cartoons. They all adored her and always wanted to be in her presence, a testament to her sweet, kind, gentle and welcoming spirit. Henriette gave her life to Jesus Christ at a very early age. She made her confession of faith at Trinity Baptist Church in Hyattsville, Maryland. There she was baptized and joined the youth ministry and youth choir. She began to steadily grow in her Christian faith, something she took very seriously even into her college years. She was one of the leaders in her college campus ministry and helped to facilitate bible studies and other Christian events. She went on to join Action Chapel, Virginia located in Alexandria, Virginia. At Action Chapel, she served in various ministries and had forged some strong bonds of friendships. In 2018, Henriette began serving at House of Prayer and Fire Ministries (HOPFM) in Lanham, Maryland. She was Ordained as a Deaconess in the summer of 2019, she also sang in the choir; praise and worship team; she worked the sound system during services and helped with the food pantry picking up and delivering food. Henny was very active at HOPFM, a humble and willing servant-always ready to step in wherever needed-from working with the young children and youth, to cleaning the church before and after services. Henriette was very instrumental in using her talents and gifts to help the church to grow and thrive. She had a servant’s heart through and through. She never ceased to help people--great and small. She gave of her time, resources, and energy tirelessly and even sacrificed her own needs in order to help others. A Beautiful Soul Lives On This journey we call life is full of mountains and valleys and Henriette certainly had her share of both. She was a fighter and would constantly rise from the ashes and continue in pursuit of her dreams. She was never one to complain and with a quiet strength, she would forge ahead without looking back. Henny was very well-loved, respected and warmly received everywhere she went. Her loss has taken a toll on the many friends and loved ones who cannot come to terms with her loss. She leaves behind a legacy of friendships, service, and sacrifice for her fellow man. What an honor to have been in the presence of a remarkable young woman who made everyone around her feel special. Fly high sweet angel of ours- Henny, you were deeply loved, cherished, and will be greatly missed! Henriette leaves to cherish her memory, a loving father Papa Abraham Ondoua Mendo, brother Nicolas Meka, sisters Sylvie Etitane Mendo, Marthe Bangura, and Pauline Mendo. She is also survived by nieces Juliette Meka, Madalene Schiavi, Isabelle Song and nephews Joshua Meka and David Bangura. She also leaves a host of relatives and cherished friends. Live-streaming will begin at 10:00am.
IN HONOR AND MEMORY OF HENRIETTE “HENNY” ZOUA MENDO Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his faithful servants. Psalm 116:15 A star, a rose, a jewel--what can be said of the incomparable Henriette Zoua Mendo. A... View Obituary & Service Information
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IN HONOR AND MEMORY OF HENRIETTE “HENNY” ZOUA MENDO
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