"Radio" Comes Alive at Local High School

The box-office hit "Radio", starring Cuba Gooding, Jr., has touched the hearts of movie-goers across the country, but what many people don't know is that a real-life radio lives and works right here in our community.

Edward Henderson was a student at Cairo High School in the mid-1980s, and for the past several years he's been back to help out. Lovingly called "Rat Man", he's a part of the Cairo High School family.

The blockbuster "Radio", about a mentally disabled man becoming part of a South Carolina High School in the 1960s, is based on a true story.

Administrators at Cairo High School say James Robert "Radio" Kennedy may have the fame, but their "radio" is right here at home.

"It wouldn't be Cairo High School without Edward “Rat Man” Henderson' at this school."

"He helps me clean the classrooms, he helps me on the football field... he's an all-around man," said Leroy McNair.

School officials estimate that “Rat Man” has been coming here mostly for fun for about 7 or 8 years. He says there's only one thing that keeps him coming back every day. Like "Radio" Kennedy, "Rat Man" lives near Cairo High and walks to work each day. Students here say they look forward to seeing his friendly face.

"I like the way he talks to everybody. He doesn't ever fuss with anybody and no one gives him any problems. He's just a nice person," said Marquis Garland.

“Rat Man” says it's that feeling of belonging that will keep him here for many years to come. Edward "Rat Man" Henderson is 40 years old. He's been diagnosed with Lou Gehrig's disease. Why he’s called "Rat Man" himself is something he couldn't say. It's just a name that stuck years ago, and now he answers to it even quicker than he answers to Edward.


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