Life Story Celebration
Friday, December 1, 2023
4:30 PM to 6:30 PM EST
Betzler Life Story Funeral Homes
6080 Stadium Drive
Kalamazoo, MI 49009
Where food, drinks, and stories will be shared.
At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.
Audrey Hensley Family Foundation c/o Betzler Life Story Funeral Homes
6080 Stadium Dr
Kalamazoo, MI 49009
Checks may be made payable to Audrey Hensley Family Foundation and mailed to Betzler Life Story Funeral Homes.
Below is the contact information for a florist recommended by the funeral home.
Life Story / Obituary
Audrey Hensley, a vibrant young lady who touched the lives of everyone around her, was a shining example of kindness and generosity. Nothing brought Audrey greater joy than spending time with those she loved, even in the simplest of moments. She embodied a spirit of determination, and her journey was one of love, laughter, and an unyielding zest for life.
The early 2000s rang in the new millennium with excitement, anticipation, and a bit of apprehension. The Internet changed the way we communicated and found answers to our most pressing questions, Apple’s new iPod allowed music lovers better access to their collections, and the camera phone made it easier to capture our most precious moments. It was also during this exciting time that Mike and Corry Hensley of Farmland, Indiana, were eagerly anticipating the birth of their child. On March 24, 2001, their wait was over, and they welcomed their daughter, Audrey, into the world at Ball Memorial Hospital in Muncie, IN.
Audrey’s childhood was filled with joy and wonder. She was raised in the family home alongside her sister, Abby. From a young age, her fascination with Disney princesses, particularly Cinderella, set the tone for a life filled with enchantment. The first time her parents took the family to Disney World, a memory etched in time when Audrey, age 5, overwhelmed with excitement, began to shake at the sight of Cinderella’s castle.
As a young girl, Audrey was never seen without her favorite American Girl bitty baby, Sarah, whom she cherished along with her purple blanket. As she grew older, her dreams and personality shaped her into the sweet, free-spirited girl she was.
When Audrey was in the fourth grade, the Hensley family moved to Portage, Michigan, where she began attending local schools. She played softball in elementary school, but she quickly decided it was too boring for her and wanted to try soccer. She joined Portage Lightning Soccer Club, where she found another family. Once in high school at Portage Northern, she joined the school’s soccer team and ended up thriving in the athletic world, becoming a three-year varsity starter and earning several awards. She was a member of National Honor Society and earned an IB honors diploma as a 2019 graduate.
Choosing Michigan State University for her bachelor’s degree proved to be a pivotal moment. It became Audrey’s “happy place,” and the exuberant cheer of “Go Green!” echoed in her life as an avid MSU sports fan. A nutrition major, Audrey secured an internship with the football team, cherishing every moment spent on the sidelines in the middle of the action. Her time at MSU became an experience for the entire family. Her parents held season tickets and frequently tailgated with other families. Audrey was never shy when her parents visited. In fact, she relished it. She was also a proud member of Delta Gamma sorority, serving as their Vice President during her junior year. DG stands for Do Good, and she certainly did. Her roommates, named the 305 Girls, became Audrey’s closest friends with an unshakable bond.
After recently graduating from MSU with her bachelor’s degree, Audrey continued on to Ball State University, her parents’ alma mater, to begin her master’s in dietetics. Motivated by her research during the COVID pandemic, Audrey developed a passion for health and fitness, foreshadowing a future.
All who knew Audrey can certainly agree that, of all the things she loved in life, she treasured her family and friends above all else. She never failed to let people know how much she loves them. Audrey’s parents supported all that she did and were her biggest cheerleaders. Audrey’s sister was her best friend with a bond that was like no other. Though the two often clashed and teased each other mercilessly, Audrey and Abby were always there for each other when it mattered most. From Starbucks runs to Target trips, they made the moments count.
The love of Audrey’s life, Gavin Vinstra, was her high school sweetheart. The two shared a passion for soccer and attended Michigan State University together. Gavin was truly a member of the family and often accompanied them on ski trips and tailgates, and the couple enjoyed visiting Gavin’s parents’ lake house in Edwardsburg, MI. Golfing and cooking together were regular activities for the couple as they continually grew closer, along with becoming Formula One racing fans. They loved spending time with their Bernedoodle, Mollie, by going on walks, rides for pup cups, boat rides, car rides, and lots of snuggle time.
Never one to sit still for long, Audrey pursued many hobbies to stay busy in her free time. Her application for grad school was full of activities, contributions, and accomplishments. Audrey loved staying active, and she ran the Indi Mini, a half marathon, in 2022 with her cousin, Kaylee. She enjoyed being part of the Burt Lake Gang, visiting the lake in the summers with family and lifelong friends.
Audrey was well known for her great sense of humor and sarcastic wit. Her contagious smile lit up every room she walked into. A beloved daughter, sister, granddaughter, cousin, girlfriend, friend, and teammate, Audrey was a delight to all she met. She exemplified what it meant to pour her heart and soul into everything without expecting anything in return. Audrey’s compassion and joy for everyone in her life echoes in her own words, “I love you.”
Audrey Hensley, age 22, died on November 24, 2023. Surviving are her parents, Mike and Corry Hensley; sister: Abby Renee Hensley; their dog, Archie; boyfriend: Gavin Vinstra; grandparents: Ed and Jane Lockard, and Bette Lou Hensley; Aunts and Uncles: Matt and Lisa Kear, and Ed and Shelly Lockard; several cousins, and an enormous amount of friends. She is predeceased by her grandfather, Al Hensley; and entered into heaven with her dog, Mollie, who passed away in the accident as well.
A Life Story Celebration will be held Friday, December 1st at 3:30 PM at Betzler Life Story Funeral Homes, 6080 Stadium Drive, Kalamazoo (269) 375-2900. A reception will follow where food, stories, and love will echo Audrey’s vibrant spirit. Visit Audrey’s webpage at BetzlerLifeStory.com to archive favorite memories, photos, and sign her guestbook. Memorial contributions may be made to Audrey Hensley Family Foundation. Checks may be made payable to the foundation and mailed to Betzler Life Story Funeral Home.