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Re: MR. ROGERS AND CAPTAIN KANGAROO, CHECK THIS OUT!
9/3/2003 11:19 AM
John Skiba (646) wrote:
I wanted to find out more about these stories so I did some research and this is what I found:
We can't say for sure whether actor Lee Marvin ever related something like the story described above to Johnny Carson on the Tonight Show (Marvin was a guest on the show seven times during Carson's tenure as host), but the details of the anecdote are undeniably false.
Lee Marvin did enlist in the U.S. Marines, saw action as Private First Class in the Pacific during World War II, and was wounded (in the buttocks) by fire which severed his sciatic nerve. However, this injury occurred during the battle for Saipan in June 1944, not the battle for Iwo Jima, which took place several months later, in February 1945. (Marvin also did receive a Purple Heart, and he is indeed buried at Arlington National Cemetery.)
Bob Keeshan, later famous as television's "Captain Kangaroo," also enlisted in the U.S. Marines, but too late to see any action during World War II. Keeshan was born on 27 June 1927 and enlisted two weeks before his 18th birthday, months too late to have taken part in the fighting at Iwo Jima. A 1997 interview with Keeshan noted that he "later enlisted in the U.S. Marines but saw no combat" because, as Keeshan said, he signed up "just before we dropped the atom bomb."
As for Fred Rogers serving as a Seal during the Vietnam War, with a large number of confirmed kills to his credit:
This same rumor has often been applied to boyish country singer-songwriter John Denver (among others), and it's just as false when told of Fred Rogers. Not only did Fred Rogers never serve in the military, there are no gaps in his career when he could conceivably have served in the military -- he went straight into college after high school, he moved directly into TV work after graduating college, and his breaks from television work were devoted to attending the Pittsburgh Theological Seminary (he was ordained as a Presbyterian minister in 1963) and the University of Pittsburgh's Graduate School of Child Development. Moreover, Fred Rogers was born in 1928 and was therefore far too old for an active combat position in the Vietnam War.
All info was excerpted from the Urban Legends Reference Pages.
Just thought I'd clear the air