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TV's Mr. Rogers Dead of Cancer at 74

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by ZuluFunk, Feb 27, 2003.

  1. ZuluFunk

    ZuluFunk Supporting Member

    Apr 14, 2001
    TV's Mr. Rogers Dead of Cancer at 74

    Updated 6:51 AM ET February 27, 2003

    PITTSBURGH (Reuters) - Fred Rogers, who became a nurturing television friend to millions of children as host of the public television program "Mister Rogers' Neighborhood," died of cancer on Thursday at 74, his producer said.

    An ordained Presbyterian minister who believed the television airwaves should be used to enhance the human spirit, Rogers died at his home in Pittsburgh. He had been diagnosed with stomach cancer.

    Rogers, who began his career in children's television doing puppet voices for a local show on PBS affiliate WQED in Pittsburgh, became a national personality in 1968 when "Mister Rogers' Neighborhood" became available to PBS stations across the country.

    Each episode opened with the gentle Mr. Rogers entering a comfortable living room, singing "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood" and donning a cardigan sweater and pair of comfortable shoes.

    One of the red sweaters is now at the Smithsonian Institution.

    The show was quickly embraced by both children and parents for an imaginative but simple approach that came with his own songs and puppet voices, and the ongoing message: "There's only one person in the whole world like you."

    It became the longest running children's program on public television. He taped his last program in December 2000. The final episode aired in August 2001, but earlier program continues to run on PBS.

    Rogers also tackled important subjects for children, including death and violence on television, including the TV news.

    During the Gulf crisis a decade ago, he made a public service announcement that told parents: "Children aren't responsible for wars. The least, and the best, we adults can do is to let our children know that we'll take good care of them, no matter what."

    Characteristically, the Web site of his production company Family Entertainment Inc. announced his death with advice on how to relay the sad news to children who will continue to see him on television.

    "Children have always known Mr. Rogers as their 'television friend,' and that relationship doesn't change with his death," the message said.

    Born in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, he studied early child development at the University of Pittsburgh and received a charge to continue his work with families and children through television when he was ordained a minister.

    Rogers is survived by his wife, Joanne, their two sons and two grandsons
  2. Prime Mover

    Prime Mover

    Feb 16, 2003
    TN, USA
  3. ZuluFunk

    ZuluFunk Supporting Member

    Apr 14, 2001
    I was able to visit the set of the show back in Pittsburgh. I never met him, but he probably had more of an impact on my life (and many others here) than recongnized.

    He was a good man.
  4. Prime Mover

    Prime Mover

    Feb 16, 2003
    TN, USA
    To be honest with you, Mr. Rogers scared the crap out me when I was younger. He reminded me of my stepfather...and my stepfather was mean...But, he was great for the kids, and it is a sad day.
  5. SuperDuck


    Sep 26, 2000
    He'll always be my neighbor. :(
  6. He had to be real because no matter how anyone tried, they really couldn't make fun of the guy. You could feel his good Karma coming through the TV.

    My favorites were the puppets, especially that cat that went, "M'yow, m'yow, m'yow." Did you ever notice that not one of his puppets had any moving parts? Inexpensive, but, effective. :)


    Rest in peace, Fred. You will be missed. It's a very sad day in the neighborhood. :(

  7. Having had 4 kids grow up with him, Mr. Rogers was certainly a big part of my household for a very long time.
  8. I never saw the show, but became aware of it after watching an Eddie Murphy sketch based on it!

    Must be a sad day, when so many people mourn the loss of a TV show presenter they knew as kids, or whose kids have gronw up with!
  9. ldiezman


    Jul 11, 2001
    Man that is sad. :(.. I grew up watching that man...
  10. James Hart

    James Hart

    Feb 1, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: see profile

    :( mine too
  11. that man was evil, i could see right through that whool sweater,he scared me...

    nah, he was a great man and will be remembered for a long time, but at the same time he did scare the hell out of me.
  12. He was a good man indeed. He had an impact on my life as well as others.

    R.I.P. Nieghbor:(
  13. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
  14. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    I grew up on him and Sesame Street. I hope they'll still be running reruns of his show when I have kids. They deserve it.
  15. DanGouge


    May 25, 2000
    :( He will be missed... Rare is the media figure today who isn't a slick marketing tool...
  16. oddentity

    oddentity Supporting Member

    Nov 20, 2000
  17. jazzbo


    Aug 25, 2000
    San Francisco, CA
  18. This really sucks. I'm 15 so it hasn't really been that long since I use to watch his show. Even though it was just a tv. show I still learned a lot through him by watching his show. He looked like a real caring man. Even though I don't watch the show anymore it would of been nice knowing that he was still alive but I guess that had to end today.

    Rest In Peace Fred Rogers:bawl:
  19. Johnalex


    Jul 20, 2001
    South Carolina
    I remember watching him EVERYday before heading off to afternoon kindergarden. I was raised on him. There is a tear in my eyes. :(
  20. I grew up with him too, and this is a truly sad day. Mr. Rogers had nothing but good intentions and really made TV worth watching. That show and Seasame Street are the two shows every kids show strives to be. But Mr. Rogers wasn't a marketing ploy, or mushy meaningless pap. He was a genuinely good person, and there are too few of him in the world.

    :( :( :(