EASLEY — Friends and family gathered last Sunday to celebrate the birthday of local man Curtis Henderson, a husband, a father, grandfather and WWII vet who just turned 95-years-old.
Henderson was born on May 20, 1923 and grew up on a farm in Anderson County with three brothers and four sisters.
He was drafted into the US Army in the Spring of 1943 where he trained in wire and communications. He served in the Philippines and was part of the 149th infantry, 38th division, company B.
Later, after he was transferred to headquarters company where he was assigned to the regimental switchboard.
“Sometimes when he was walking the DMZ border, he would share cigarettes with a Japanese soldier and worry about being shot by him the next day,” a grandson wrote in a high school report.
Henderson’s wife, Charlotte, put together the birthday bash for her husband after services at Corinth Baptist Church where Curtis has the distinction of being the oldest member of the church.
Additionally, over the years, Curtis’ construction knowledge has helped to make the church the beacon of worship it is today — among other things he built the church’s baptismal.
Rev. Dean Poteat, who married the Hendersons 25-years-ago, spoke fondly of his friend: “Curtis has always been a great man and a faithful Christian,” he said. “I pray he will have many more years.”
In all, around 125 people showed up to wish Curtis well.
Chad Henderson, Curtis’ grandson, said some of his fondest memories of his grandfather were watch baseball together.
“He knew every player, all the stats and rarely missed a game,” he said. “He would get really emotional watching ‘his’ Braves.”
Curtis’ grandson said his grandfather was a great influence on his life and faith and was the reason he himself went into the ministry.
“I just wanted him to know how much he meant to his family, his church and his community,” said Charlotte. “Everyone loves Curtis.”
Reach Kasie Strickland at 864-855-0355.