About the awesome Mr. Rogers

Fred Rogers (aka: Mr. Rogers) was awesome. End of post.

Okay, yes, he deserves more. Much more.

The sarcastic, irreverent humorist publication “Cracked” was spot on when they said about Mr. Rogers:

Sit down, neighbor, and hear of a man who did not conquer the world, but did it one better; he reminded us that the world needs unity rather than conquest. He walked among us as a man, although he was a hand-to-God saint. They say the difference between a saint and a psychopath is empathy, and Mr. Fred Rogers had an ocean of it, which makes him either the sanest man in history or the craziest hero we ever had.

Here we go

Frederick “Fred” McFeely Rogers (March 20, 1928 – February 27, 2003) was an American educator, Presbyterian minister, songwriter, author, and television host. Rogers was most famous for creating and hosting Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood (1968–2001), which featured his gentle, soft-spoken personality and directness to his audiences.

TIMELINE REVIEW

  • 1928 – Born (Latrobe, PA (near Pittsburgh))
  • 1946 – Graduated High Shcool
  • 1946 – Entered Dartmouth College (Hanover, NH)
  • 1948 – Transferred to Rollins College (Winter Park, FL)
  • 1951 – Graduated from Rollins College
  • 1952 – Married Sara Joanne Byrd
  • 1953 – Began first show “The Children’s Corner” on WQED (Pittsburgh, PA)
  • 1959 – Son James born
  • 1961 – Son John born
  • 1963 – Graduated from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary (Pittsburgh, PA)
  • 1963 – Began the show “Mrrogers” on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (Toronto, Ontario)
  • 1968 – Began “Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood” on the CBC
  • 1999 – Inducted into the Television Hall Of Fame
  • 2001 – Retired “Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood”
  • 2003 – Died (Pittsburgh, PA)
  • 2012 – “Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood”

* Not to mention multiple awards and honors Mr. Rogers has earned from his peers, etc.

To get started, if you’re the type that likes to watch videos, here’s one called “35 Facts About Mr. Fred Rogers”

EDUCATION

Mr. Rogers was born, raided, and graduated from High School near Pittsburgh, PA. He went to the Ivy League school Dartmouth College in New Hampshire but transferred to Rollins College in Winter Park, FL where he graduated with a BA in Music Composition in 1951. In 1963 he graduated from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary and was ordained as a Presbyterian (USA) minister.

INSPIRATION

Many of the most memorable things Rogers said to children were inspired by things his own grandfather, Fred Brooks McFeely, said to him. “I think it was when I was leaving one time to go home after our time together that my grandfather said to me, ‘You know, you made this day a really special day. Just by being yourself. There’s only one person in the world like you. And I happen to like you just the way you are,’” Rogers remembered. “That just went right into my heart. And it never budged.” (Rogers named Mr. McFeely, the show’s Speedy Delivery messenger character after his grandfather.)

TV

Mr. Roger’s parents were among the few who owned a TV in the early 1950’s. Mr. Rogers (I just can’t call him ‘Fred’) wasn’t impressed with what he saw on TV. He felt more could be done. In 1953 he got a job at Pittsburgh’s public television channel (WQED) where he’d hope to make a difference via children’s programming. Following are just a few ways he really made a difference.

MR. ROGERS’ NEIGHBORHOOD

In 1963 “Mrrogers” aired via the Canadian Broadcast Company (CBC). In 1966, “MisteRogers’ Neighborhood” aired in the US on a channel that would later become PBS. The show targeted children aged 2-5 and was produced by Pittsburgh’s WQED and ran nationally until 2001. It was this show that became Mr. Roger’s claim to fame.

And now for the most famous song of all…

CONGRESS

In 1969, President Nixon wanted to cut public television funding in half. Mr. Rogers, in 6 minutes, changed it all…

DANIEL TIGER’S NEIGHBORHOOD

Mr. Roger’s first TV show in ’53 was live and titled “The Children’s Corner”. The idea was to show children’s educational videos. But opps! The first episode started out as a disaster. Within the first 2 minutes of the premiere the first shown film broke! Mr. Rogers scrambled and saw a puppet he was given the night before the premiere. It was a tiger named “Daniel” and it was through this puppet-model programming that Mr. Rogers found his niche.

Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood” is the puppet continuation of Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood after the death of Mr. Rogers.

RUMORS

SOURCES

Mr. Rogers Rulz!

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