Rogers at the White House, 2002
Fred McFeely Rogers|
20 Mairch 1928
Latrobe, Pennsylvanie, U.S.
27 Februar 2003 (aged 74)|
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, U.S.
|Ither names||Mister Rogers|
|Thrift||Children's televeesion presenter, actor, puppeteer, sanger, composer, televeesion producer, author, educator, Presbyterian minister|
|Hauf-marrae(s)||Joanne Byrd (m. 1952)|
Fred McFeely Rogers (20 Mairch 1928 – 27 Februar 2003) wis an American televeesion personality, muisicker, puppeteer, writer, producer, an Presbyterian meenister. He wis kent as the creautor, componer, producer, heid writer, an host o the preschuil televeesion series Mister Rogers' Neighborhood frae 1968 till his reteerment in 2001.
Rogers wisna happy wi the televeesion shaws that childer war seein. He begoud tae write an perform local Pittsburgh-aurie shaws for childer. In 1968, Eastern Educational Television Network begoud naitionwide distribution o Rogers's new show on WQED. For thirty years, Rogers becam a televeesion icon o childer's enterteenment an eddication.
Table o contents
Early life[eedit | eedit soorce]
Rogers wis born in Latrobe, Pennsylvania tae James Rogers an Nancy McFeely. His faither wis a businessman. His mither came frae a rich Pittsburgh faimily an an aw wis a hospital volunteer durin an efter World War II. His grandfather frae his mither's side, Fred McFeely, wis the preses o McFeely Brick, ane o Latrobe’s lairgest businesses. Rogers grew up in a lairge brick mansion at 737 Weldon Street in Latrobe.
Early career[eedit | eedit soorce]
Rogers enterit seminary efter college but wantit tae work wi televeesion. In an interview wi CNN, Rogers said, "I went into televeesion because I hatit it so, an I thought there's some way of usin this fabulous instrument to nurture those who would watch an listen". He applit for a job at NBC in New York Ceety in 1951 an workit first as an assistant producer, an later as a network floor director on muisical programs sic as Your Hit Parade, The Kate Smith Hour, an The Voice o Firestone. He an aw workit on Gabby Hayes's childer's show.
Mister Rogers' Neighborhood[eedit | eedit soorce]
Mister Rogers' Neighborhood began in 1968 an ran for 895 episodes. It airit on National Educational Television, which later became The Public Broadcasting Service. The last set o new episodes wis tapit in Decembar 2000 an began airin in August 2001. Bi 1985, aicht percent o fowk livin in the Unitit States watchit the show.
The program ayeweys startit with Rogers coming home, singin his theme sang "Won't You Be My Neighbor?", an changin intae sneakers. In his show, Rogers wad ayeweys gang on trips, teach new things an show short films on "Picture, Picture". Each episode includit a trip tae Rogers's "Neighborhood of Make-Believe" wi a trolley, a castle, an the kinrick's ceetizens, includin Keeng Friday XIII.
Rogers ayeweys fed his aquarium fish durin episodes an wad ayeweys say this tae his audience he wis feedin them acause he receivit a letter frae a youn blind girl who wantit tae know each time he did this. The program wad end wi Rogers wingin "It's Such a Good Feelin".
Rogers believit nae tae act differently when he wis bein filmit an how he acted normally, sayin that "One of the greatest gifts you can give anybody is the gift o your honest self. I also believe that kids can spot a phony a mile away". Rogers wrote awmaist aw o the muisic on the program. He wantit tae teach childer tae luve themselves an others, an he talkit aboot common childhood fears wi comfortin sangs. He ance teuk a trip tae a childer's hospital tae show childer that a hospital is nae a place tae fear.
Rogers wad talk aboot social issues on his program includin the assassination of Robert F. Kennedy, racism an divorce. Ane famous episode, Rogers soakit his feet wi Officer Clemmons (François Clemmons), who wis African-Americain, in a kiddie pool on a het day. The scene wis a message o inclusion durin a time when racial segregation in the Unitit States wis common.
Rogers wis an aw kent for havin childer wi disabilities on his show. In a 1981 episode, Rogers met a young quadriplegic boy, Jeff Erlanger, who showit how his electric wheelchair workit an explainit why he needed it. Erlanger an Rogers baith sang a duet o the sang "It's You I Like". Afore the tapin, Erlanger haed lang been a fan o the program, an his parents wrote a letter tae Rogers askin if thay coud meet.
Rogers never talkit aboot his religious beliefs on the show acause he did nae want ony viewer tae feel ignored frae the show. Durin the Gulf War, he comfortit his audience that aw childer in the neighborhood wad be well carit for an askit parents tae promise tae tak care of thair childer.
Efter the September 11 terrorist attacks, Rogers tapit public service announcements for parents aboot how tae discuss tragic world news events wi thair childer, tellin them tae "look for the helpers". The quote continues tae gang viral followin tragic news events.
PBS fundin[eedit | eedit soorce]
In 1969, Rogers appearit afore the Unitit States Senate Subcommittee on Communications. His goal wis tae ask the Senate tae support fundin for PBS an the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, acause proposit budget cuts. In aboot sax minutes o testimony, Rogers spoke o the need for social an emotional eddication that public television gae. He arguit that ither televeesion programmin lik his Neighborhood helpit encourage childer tae acome happy ceetizens.
The chairman o the subcommittee, John O. Pastore, did nae know Rogers or his work an wis whiles said tae be impatient. Houiver, efter Rogers, Pastore said that the testimony haed gien him goosebumps, an said, "I think it's wonderful. Looks like you just earnit the $20 million". The subsequent congressional appropriation, for 1971, increasit PBS fundin frae $9 million tae $22 million.
Other works[eedit | eedit soorce]
In 1978, while takin a break frae tapin new Neighborhood episodes, Rogers hostit an interview program for adults on PBS callit Old Friends...New Friends.
The anly time Rogers appearit on televeesion as someone ither than himself wis in 1996 when he playit a preacher on ane episode o Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman. Rogers voicit himself on the "Arthur Meets Mister Rogers" episode o the PBS Kids series Arthur.
Personal life[eedit | eedit soorce]
Rogers haed an apartment in New York Ceety an a simmer home on Nantucket Island in Massachusetts. Rogers wis reid–green color blind, swam every mornin, an neither smoked nor drank. He wis a vegetarian on acause he believit it wis wrong, sayin "I don't want to eat anythin that has a mother". Despite popular rumors, he never servit in the military as a Navy SEAL durin the Vietnam War an never haed tattoos.
Death[eedit | eedit soorce]
Rogers wis diagnosit wi stomach cancer in December 2002, nae lang efter his retirement. He haed surgery on Januar 6, 2003, which wis unsuccessful. A week earlier, he wis grand marshal o the Tournament o Roses Parade, wi Art Linkletter an Bill Cosby.
Mair than 2,700 fowk went tae his memorial service at Heinz Hall, includin umwhile Good Morning America host David Hartman, Teresa Heinz Kerry, philanthropist Elsie Hillman, PBS Preses Pat Mitchell, Arthur creautor Marc Brown, an The Very Hungry Caterpillar author-illustrator Eric Carle. Rogers is burit at Unity Cemetery in Latrobe.
Honors[eedit | eedit soorce]
Rogers wis honorit wi the Presidential Medal o Freedom bi Preses George W. Bush, forty honorary degrees, an a Peabody Award. He wis addit intae the Televeesion Hall o Fame. He wis listit nummer 35 o the TV Guide's Fifty Greatest TV Stars o All Time. The Smithsonian Institution haes ane of his sweaters as a "Treasure o Americain History".
References[eedit | eedit soorce]
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