The Synagogue Massacre Was Actually in Mister Rogers’s Neighborhood. What Would He Say?

The irony that the real-life neighborhood of Mister Rogers was the site of a hate-inspired mass shooting was lost on few people. Fred Rogers lived in and filmed “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood” in the historically Jewish Pittsburgh neighborhood of Squirrel Hill, where an anti-Semite opened fire at a Saturday morning service in the Tree of Life synagogue, killing 11 worshipers. Two other congregants and four police officers were injured. Rogers’s connection to the area quickly spread throughout the country but it was already well-known throughout greater Pittsburgh.

The Fred Rogers Center for Early Learning and Children’s Media at Saint Vincent College in Rogers’s hometown of Latrobe, Pa., 40 miles east of Pittsburgh, is dedicated to preserving Rogers’s legacy and fostering research in early childhood development and education based on his philosophy.

Karen Struble Myers, a spokeswoman for the Fred Rogers Center, was finishing her morning coffee at home before leaving for the day when she saw a breaking news alert from a local television station on Facebook about the shooting.

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