“It’s a beautiful day in this neighborhood.” “I like you just the way you are”
These precious words were first spoken and sung 50 years ago by a Presbyterian minister, TV personality, and children show’s host, Mr Fred Rogers. As a 6 years old kid, I would come home from school every day and turn on the TV and there it was. Channel 295- PBS Kids.
Mr Rogers exhibited his warm, caring, and infectious personality towards children. When I was feeling blue, he made me feel special by explaining concepts in a slow easy to understand method. Because of him, millions of children like myself who grew up during the 1990s and 2000s came to know him and appreciate him through television. His kindness helped me through some of the tough times my childhood.
King Friday, Officer Clemmons, Mr McFeely and Mr Rogers himself are some of the characters on his show. From set to finished product, Mr Rogers did the hand puppets, wrote the songs, and made children everywhere feel loved and cared for. I was one of those kids.
Unlike other children’s TV shows, his shows started in 1968. This year is the 50th year anniversary that the show was born. I have to say that my favorite episode was Mr Rogers’ encounter with Big Bird from Sesame Street.
Mr. Rogers was one of the many examples of kindness, love, and compassion in the midst of chaos happening in the world. Another poignant episode he did was the one where he explained what “assassination” meant to children who were scared of President Kennedy and Martin Luther King’s murder and about death in general. This was one of the many examples that he showed his deep concern for children.
This year honors his 90th birthday and is also the anniversary of his show. Because of these special events, a movie is being made about his life called “You are my Friend” starring Tom Hanks as the iconic TV host. There are even mailing stamps that came out because of these special events coming up.
Mr Rogers dedicated himself to his show since then until the 2000s and he passed away 3 years later on February 27, 2003, from stomach cancer
Even though he is physically gone from earthly life, he lives on in the hearts of many children including myself. I was lucky to have had the opportunity to watch this show when I was growing up.
I’m sure Mr Rogers is smiling up there. Thank you for making an impact on my life Mr Rogers.
It’s you I like Mr Rogers.
The bottom line is, we should all practice kindness and compassion like Mr. Rogers.
There will never be another man like him.
Be kind and compassionate today. Be a neighbor to someone.