Beloved Comedian and Actor Henry Rodney, who is known for his quick wits and ability to have his audience rolling with laughter in their seats, has lately however been fighting an unknown illness that is threatening his career in theatre. Rodney has been an entertainer for over 30 years and has performed both locally and abroad.
Rodney has been searching for a breakthrough in an illness doctors have not yet identified and he says while he trusts in the Almighty to bring him through, he is concerned about his deteriorating health. He explained that he has been suffering for over a year and has visited a number of doctors, but thus far, none of them was able to provide an accurate diagnosis.
“Over a year ago, I started to experience weakness in my legs and I decided to go check it out. So I went and saw Dr Roach, and Dr Roach questioned me thoroughly. He asked me to do some tests, and when I returned… he said he suspected Parkinson’s disease. He referred me to the internal medicine clinic to meet with the specialist. I did meet that consultant named Dr Khan, he’s a Cuban doctor, and based on Dr Roach’s report, he gave me two months’ treatment. It wasn’t until I got back after the treatment, that I fortunately or unfortunately saw another doctor. I saw Dr Khan that morning and he told me it wasn’t Parkinson. He too questioned me and put me on an exercise routine. He was adamant, he wanted a second opinion so I went across to Dr Doobay,” he explained.
He related that Dr Doobay ran several tests; however, the cause of his illness was still undetermined. He also explained that the doctor put him on medication to help boost his immune system, so as to alleviate some of the symptoms that he had been experiencing. “He asked me to redo some tests, and to do some additional tests. I did the same… I kept doing tests until he was satisfied. And I was not treated but Dr Doobay continued with the builders – Iron, B Complex and multivitamins… and that’s what I have been using all the time,” Rodney explained.
However, despite this, Rodney related that lately the symptoms have become more intense, impeding his daily routines to an extent. “Lately, I have been experiencing the weakness again,” he shared, adding that the change in his health was noticed by his fellow actors and comedians who were quick to offer their assistance.
“My colleagues observed that my movements slowed considerably… and I wasn’t worried ‘cause I am a believer and I know that there is a God… I know he is in charge of everything. I was a bit concerned though. I was concerned with the slowing of my movements as I was thinking of my acting career and they started to look out for me. And then suddenly I got this call from Desiree Edghill who spearheads everything and they’ve been doing a wonderful job. They were in a meeting with me and some others in the entertainment fraternity and they took it from there. Everything set and organised was done by them… a group of concerned thespians,” he fondly related.
Edghill set up a GoFundMe page online in Rodney’s aid, and a benefit concert has also been organised for the comedian. The concert titled “ROKATUKS” was planned with the aim of raising funds to offset the medical expenses for the popular actor.
Following are scenes from the concert that was held last Saturday night at the National Cultural Centre in aid of Rodney’s medical expenses after his sudden illness: