Former Eleanor Roosevelt Teacher to Be Honored in Laurel Tournament

Posted July 11, 2010

Mrs. Henderson with a student in 2009.

Following the death of art teacher, mentor and friend, Andrea “Froggy” Henderson, Eleanor Roosevelt High School alumni have become reacquainted in efforts to leap towards a cure for cancer, forming the Andrea Henderson Memorial Fund.

Henderson, who lost her short battle to breast cancer on April 12, 2010, was the ERHS Ice Raiders hockey team sponsor from its inaugural season in 1998 through 2008. She was not only the high school art teacher and hockey team sponsor, but a second mother, inspiration, and shoulder to lean on to many. In an interview on Jimmy Kimmel Live, Martin Lawrence, ERHS class of 1984 alum, credited Henderson with helping him get his comedy career off the ground by encouraging him to go to clubs to learn and perform.Upon hearing of her failing health, Jason Harab, co-founder and chairman, began thinking of ways to honor Henderson. “I wanted to bring all of the guys back together, let them know Frog was really sick and figure out a way to do something good in her honor.” Harab, the oldest of three brothers, all of whom played for the Ice Raiders and had strong personal relationships with Henderson, never took her art classes, but still considers her “the best teacher [he] ever had.”

“I got some of the old team together and decided the best way to do this with as many people as she touched would be to do a huge community event, doing what we all do best – play hockey,” says Harab.

The Andrea Henderson Memorial Fund will be hosting a charity hockey tournament, “Leap Towards a Cure,” at the Gardens Ice House in Laurel, Md., August 6 – 7, 2010. The tournament will feature 12 area adult hockey teams, including many former Ice Raiders, as well as members of the community whose hearts were touched by Henderson in some way. All proceeds from the tournament will be donated to the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins, where Henderson was receiving treatment for breast cancer.

“Froggy was very important to all of us, and she kind of brought us all together in a way and did so much for everyone – on the team, at school, in the community – so it is really important that we do a little good back for her after all she did for us,” says Alyssa Walker, class of 2006.

In addition to the adult hockey tournament games, Leap Towards A Cure will feature activities for families and community members, free food, mascot appearances, a silent auction, and an art gallery composed of works by Henderson’s former art students. Community friendly activities begin Saturday, August 7 at 10 a.m. and continue through 7 p.m., while spectators can watch tournament games beginning Friday afternoon at 3:20 p.m. and Saturday morning at 8:40 a.m.

Do you know a USA Hockey registered team that would be interested in playing? Click here for an invitation letter!