Open main menu

Jess Daniel Dennis Cain III (June 17, 1926 – February 14, 2008) was an American radio personality. For 34 years, from 1957 to 1991, Cain was the morning drive personality on WHDH/850 in Boston. Cain also was a professional actor and appeared in numerous theater and musical theater productions, and appeared in early television on the Sergeant Bilko - a.k.a. The Phil Silvers Show. In the Boston area, he was known especially for playing Ebenezer Scrooge in Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol. A native of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, he was a graduate of Northeast Catholic High School in Philadelphia and the University of Notre Dame.

Cain's song about Carl Yastrzemski — which he adapted from an old ragtime tune called "Shoutin' Liza Trombone" — appeared on "The Impossible Dream," a WHDH-produced album commemorating the 1967 Boston Red Sox season and later as part of the soundtrack of the 2005 movie Fever Pitch.

He was a World War II veteran, serving under Audie Murphy at the Battle of the Bulge and earning the Silver Star.

CAIN, JESSE D. Citation: The President of the United States takes pleasure in presenting the Silver Star Medal to Jesse D. Cain (33813241), Private First Class [then Private], U.S. Army, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action while serving with Company A, 275th Infantry Regiment, 70th Infantry Division. On 16 March 1945, at 1500 Hours, near Saarbrücken, Germany, Private Cain was the only one of a group of fifteen men sent to obtain information and determine enemy strength in the Siegfried Line, who was not a casualty in the machine-gun trap sprung on them. Crawling, creeping, and finally running, while enemy machine-gun and burp guns blazed away at him, Private Cain made his way back to his Battalion Command Post to report the situation. He then directed the laying of a smoke screen by the mortars, and then led a second group to the scene. Seven painfully wounded men were evacuated while streams of enemy fire probed the smoke-covered field in an attempt to hamper the movement and escape. Private Cain's actions, without regard for his own safety, reflect great credit on himself and the Armed Forces of the United States. Headquarters, 3d Infantry Division, General Orders No. 394 (December 15, 1945) Home Town: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

In 1970, Cain criticized Johnny Cash's anti-war song "What is Truth?". He called the song "junk" and "Trash".[1]

Cain died from prostate cancer in his Beacon Hill home at the age of 81. He was inducted into the National Radio Hall of Fame in November 2008.[2]


  • Marquard, Bryan (2008-02-14). "Radio legend Jess Cain is dead at 81". The Boston Globe.

External linksEdit