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Radio Facts is sad to report the passing of Detroit radio icon, Angelo B. Henderson. The Pulitzer Prize winning reporter died early Saturday at his Pontiac home. He was 51 years go age at time of his death.
As for now there are no details regarding the cause of death. His passing was confirmed by his wife, Felecia D. Henderson, assistant managing editor of features and presentation at The Detroit News.
If you have even been to Detroit or have family there as I do, you know or have at least heard about the legendary Angelo B.Henderson. Henderson hosted his own show, “Your Voice with Angelo Henderson,” on WCHB-1200, one of Detroit’s most popular news talk radio shows owned and operated by Radio One Detroit. Henderson is also the founder of Angelo Ink, a writing, speaking and media consulting firm. The radio legend was also an associate minister at Triumph Church.
The Rev. Solomon Kinloch, Jr., senior pastor of Triumph Church, released a statement on behalf the church saying, “A giant tree in the forest of humanity has fallen… “Metro Detroit’s loss is now Heaven’s gain.”
Angelo B. Henderson not only gave a voice to the community, he was also heavily involved in the community. Henderson was “larger than life,” said Raphael B. Johnson, who co-founded the Detroit 300 with Henderson as a way of assisting police in solving crimes in a community where people normally don’t like to associate with the police. Through the church, Henderson also coordinated evangelism and community outreach initiatives, including existing partnerships with organizations like Forgotten Harvest, Big Brothers Big Sisters, and various support groups associated with physicians from Detroit Medical Center and Community Network Services.
Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan said Detroiters “lost one of their strongest voices today.”
“Few people have worked as passionately and tirelessly to improve this community than Angelo Henderson,” Duggan said in a statement. “Through his radio program, his ministry and his personal community service, everything Angelo did was meant to uplift our city and its people. In his time with us, he touched countless lives, including my own. My heart goes out to Angelo’s family and to the thousands of fans he considered family.”
Detroit political consultant Adolph Mongo described Henderson as a “great journalist who loved the city of Detroit.”
“He just didn’t talk the talk but he walked the walk. Angelo will be sorely missed by the community,” Mongo said.
Henderson also walked the walk as a print and broadcast journalist for 24 years. He served two terms as a parliamentarian of the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) and two terms as president of the group’s Detroit chapter.
“NABJ is stunned to learn of the passing of long-time member and award-winning journalist Angelo Henderson,” NABJ President Bob Butler said in a statement Saturday evening.
The news of Henderson’s passing came as an absolute shock and resonated deeply with many NABJ members, particularly NABJ presidents.
“Angelo was one of the most influential members in this organization, said Sidmel Estes, who served as president from 1991-1993, Henderson’s second term on the executive board as parliamentarian.
“His buoyant style in terms of his personal demeanor, as well as his love for NABJ is unmatched. This is just devastating to me,” said Estes.
Ironically Angelo B. Henderson died during Black History Month because he is definitely someone who will be recognized and honored as an icon, the first, and as of now the only African-American reporter to win a Pulitzer Prize for The Wall Street Journal, which he did in 1999. He was also honored by Columbia University as one of the nation’s best reporters on race and ethnicity in America.
“He will always be remembered for that Pulitzer Prize, which inspired so many of us, and for the way his personality would light up a room,” said Richard Prince, a journalist and columnist who writes the Journal-ism blog for the Maynard Institute.
Although Henderson became a son of Detroit, he was actually born in Louisville, Ky., to the late Ruby and Roger Henderson. He is survived by his wife and their 19-year-old son Grant. Funeral arrangements are being handled by Swanson Funeral Home. Details are pending.
Radio Facts would like to send our sincere condolences to the family, friends, and community that adored Angelo B. Henderson. His legacy shall live one through those that had the honor of being loved by him.
It is obvious that Angelo B. Henderson was extremely loved by his peers and the community. Once the news hit social media the love just poured in from around the nation. Here are just a few comments left on his last Facebook post.