Cold case victim still honored at University of Pittsburgh

Cold case victim still honored at University of Pittsburgh
Robert T. Henderson
Robert T. Henderson
Jason Lee McCormick
Jason Lee McCormick
Alan Juffs
Alan Juffs
Media Center at the University of Pittsburgh
Media Center at the University of Pittsburgh
Robert T. Henderson scholarship plaque
Robert T. Henderson scholarship plaque

By Jim Mendoza - bio | email

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - An old photograph of Robert T. Henderson is as dated as his death.

His decomposing body was found in an Ilikai apartment in 1996.

Thursday night Honolulu police arrested Jason Lee McCormick.

The murder case that was cold is now revived.

McCormick is charged with killing the 51-year-old Henderson, a visiting linguistics professor from the University of Pittsburgh, where he's still mourned.

"We were all terribly shocked and upset and couldn't imagine why anyone would want to do something to our colleague," said Alan Juffs, an associate professor of linguistics at Pitt.

Henderson was in Hawaii to lecture at summer workshops at UH.

He was staying at the Ilikai. He was last seen five days before he turned up dead and news got back to Pittsburgh.

"I received a phone call from professor Paulston," Juffs said. "She said I better sit down because she had some very bad news."

Henderson was so respected at Pitt they named a media center and a scholarship after him. His family remains connected to the campus.

"They come back every year. And they come here to meet with the scholarship winner," Juffs said.

The 14-year-old case is now a step closer to a courtroom.

McCormick's bail is set at $500,000.

Henderson was supposed to travel to Asia after his Hawaii stop.

His family and friends want to learn why he never made it.

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