Mr. Fred McFeely Rogers (March 20, 1928 - February 27, 2003) known professionally as Mister Rogers of "Mister Rogers Neighborhood" children's program that ran from 1968 to 2001 has been inducted into the Child Advocacy Hall of Fame as our 2018 Inductee.
Young Fred Rogers
Over his lifetime and continuing to today, Mr. Fred Rogers collectively touched the lives of over a BILLION children worldwide through the broadcast airwaves into homes throughout North America and beyond. Fred Rogers television program was uniquely hand-crafted for kids that stood as a timeless beacon of trust, entertainment and education in contrast to other children's programming during its impressive 33 year production run.
The gentle and wholesome nature of Mr. Rogers direct dialogue of looking and speaking straight into the camera at his young audience instilled trust, credibility and loyalty in both children and parents regardless of culture or social status. Absent from Rogers programming were explosions, dark-themed villains, depictions of weaponry, fighting or anything evil......it was G rated children's programming that raised no "red flags" even among the most conservative parents and caregiver
Fred Rogers was genuine all the time
Fred Rogers was born and passed away in the east coast American state of Pennsylvania, he was a loving husband to his wife Joanne, a Father to two sons, James and John Rogers and a brother to his sister Elaine. By age 5 Fred began singing, playing the piano and became an excellent student. Later Fred made the honor roll all four years at Latrobe high school as well as serving as President of the student council and Editor in Chief of the yearbook all while studying aeronautics and flight dynamics with aviation lessons, obtaining his pilots license as a teenager.
Rogers with his puppet
Amazingly, young teenage Fred Rogers achieved much of this during the war years with strict rationing nationwide with the country's attention focused on winning the war on two fronts. Fred graduated high school the year after world war two ended. It's been speculated by biographers and historians that Rogers, not knowing the date nor circumstances of the end of Second World War that dominated his junior high and high school years, steadfastly prepared himself to serve as an aviator in the United States Armed Forces
Having logged considerable solo flight time after earning his pilots license as a high school kid, Rogers undoubtedly dreamed of flying a P-51 Mustang commanding a 440mph. fifteen hundred horsepower Rolls Royce power plant or the legendary 421mph. Lockheed P-38 Lightening in aerial service to his country as he neared high school graduation.
Fred Rogers was a pilot
Upon graduation from high school, the war was over and Fred went to college graduating in 1951 with a degree in music composition. Also in 1951, Rogers landed a job in the Big Apple with NBC as an associate producer then a director on various musical programs and children's television. The very next year, Fred got married to his sweetheart Joanne of 51 years of marriage and managed to find the time to not only do a great job for NBC and time being an attentive and loving husband to Joanne, Rogers found the time to attend classes at Pittsburg Theological Seminary and became an ordained Presbyterian minister. This amazing juggling achievement set the pace for the ever ambitious Fred Rogers who always maintained a strong connection to his family and community.
Mister Rogers was a musician
Fred Rogers was a gifted high achiever throughout his life, with a long track record of good decision making, getting along with others, avoiding scandals, litigation and served as a role model to his family, community and the rest of us. Fred believed in daily exercise, swimming every morning and never smoked or ingested alcohol. Later in life Fred became a vegetarian and had a lifelong relationship with his Presbyterian "church family”.
Fred loved the Atlantic coast
Fred Rogers earned a Peabody award, over 40 honorary degrees and most prestigious .... was a Presidential Medal of Freedom Receiptant In 2002. One of Fred's famous sweaters is enshrined in the Smithsonian as a "Treasure of American History" and TV guide ranked him number 35 of the greatest all time TV stars. Fred was inducted in the Television Hall of Fame In 1999. We are honored beyond words to have Fred Rogers as our 2018 Child Advocacy Hall of Fame Inductee.
Rogers swam daily
Thank You Mister Rogers for your outstanding contribution to the lives of children !