View Full Version : Fred Rogers' death

February 27th, 2003, 10:18 AM
While not exactly on topic--Fred Rogers (of MisterRoger's Neighborhood) was well-known, in Pittsburgh, for his love of swimming. He was seen many times at the local pools (I think U of Pitt's Trees or CMU's pool) doing his daily swim.

He did many shows related to swimming--even showing himself swimming with others. One of his early frequent guests was Coach Will Saunders who, in the 60s, was the coach for one of the local high school swim teams.

February 27th, 2003, 04:40 PM
Fred Rogers spoke at my college graduation. He requested that he be allowed to swim laps at 5am prior to the days activities. The school went all out and built him a separate bathroom and shower and fixed up all sorts of problems with the pool prior to his arrival.

Mark in MD
February 27th, 2003, 09:02 PM
No doubt! The AP wire obituary in the Baltimore Sun today did mention that Mr. Rogers swam daily. Even at my age, I still loved seeing him on TV. A legend in our time, to be sure.


jim thornton
February 27th, 2003, 11:42 PM
Thanks for noting the Fred Rogers-swimming connection. I have lived in Pittsburgh most of my life and somehow didn't know Mr. Rogers swam daily--or even at all. He was truly a great fellow, whose dedication to his audience was awe inspiring. I have long admired him--and it's neat to know he was a swimmer, too! I once heard him interviewed, I think on public radio, and he said that he purposely tried to take things incredibly slowly, methodically, because the kids who watch his show tend to have such hectic, hurried lives. They need something steady and calm in their lives as an antidote to the daily frenzy.

Maybe that's one of things that so good about swimming. People who don't swim look at us practice and think it's monotonous and dull; maybe Fred Rogers' choice of avocation hinted at a kind of practicing (as an adult) what he preached (for kids.)

sarah tyler
February 28th, 2003, 12:35 PM
One day my brother and I were working out at the Rollins College (Winter Park, Fl.) pool. He said "Hey, Fred" to a fellow who was just getting into the pool. Fred returned the greeting and they exchanged some other pleasantries and swimming banter. I asked my brother who he was (as his voice and demeanor were familiar to the far reaches of my old brain) and he said "Mr. Rogers. You know, from the neighborhood. He comes to swim every day he is here visiting. He is as charming and genuine here as he appears on television."

March 1st, 2003, 12:27 AM
Among the many joys my young son has given me has been my re-introduction to Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood.

I watched the show as a young child. But later, as an older kid, I scoffed at Mr. Rogers and his "uncool" style.

Boy was I wrong.

Watching my son transfixed by Mr. Rogers' special style of caring, soothing and geniune kindness, I realized what a genius he was.

Mark in MD
March 1st, 2003, 10:11 PM

Mr. Rogers IMHO gave Pittsburgh more publicity that one would realize. In almost all of his episodes, Mr. Rogers would go to the Land of Make-Believe. The way Mr. Rodgers would get there is by an imaginary streetcar and there would be a shot of a model streetcar taking Mr. Rogers to the Land of Make-Believe. In the show, the streetcar was called "Trolley."

These travels to the Land of Make-Believe eventually evolved into a show about real streetcars. Mr. Rogers taped a show from the Pennsylvania Trolley Museum, in Washington PA, that showed children how electric streetcars work. (Of course today, streetcars are now called light rail vehicles.) To commemorate Mr. Rogers' visit, the PTM has on display a life-sized picture of Mr. Rogers sitting on the steps of the car used for the show he tape there. I can see that picture now of him in his cardigan sweater, canvas tennis shoes and welcoming smile.

Certainly, he was "one in a million."


Tom Ellison
March 14th, 2003, 09:20 PM
He was a gentle man....and I admired that in him...I will miss him on TV...
Tom Ellison

March 20th, 2003, 12:19 PM
There's a Fred Rogers still competing in the PMS LMSC.