The news that Jerry Haynes, the one and only Mr. Peppermint, is fighting Parkinson’s makes this 50-year-old-plus fan feel like he’s back in his pajamas watching the old "Mr. Peppermint" show in his parents’ den. One of the delights when my folks moved to Dallas in the mid-’60s was the great — well it seemed great at the time — locally produced children’s TV. (There’s certainly nothing like it today.) There was Icky Twerp on Channel 11 (and if you were a fan, check this out) and a terrific Sunday show on Channel 5 that aired the "Davey and Goliath" claymation cartoons. But the class act was Mr. Peppermint, who was Dallas’ Captain Kangaroo and Mister Rogers. He even had his own neighborhood, Peppermint Place, which was the name of a later spinoff show. In the early 1980s, he launched a well-received career as a character actor, maybe most notably in "Places in the Heart," which was filmed in Waxahachie and earned Sally Field her "you really, really like me" Oscar. (Click here for his imdb.com bio.) And, if memory serves, Haynes announced President Kennedy’s assassination on Channel 8. WFAA aired that historic footage during the 20th or 30th anniversary of the tragedy; I wish they would do it again this fall.
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