Announcing the fourth annual 1-4-3 Day in Pennsylvania, Gov. Tom Wolf encouraged Keystone State residents to show kindness, generosity, and love this coming May 23. The date is the 143rd day of 2022, a number imbued with special significance, writes James Wesser for WETM 18 News, Elmira, NY.
The tradition was started in 2019 to honor Mr. Fred Rogers, the gentle children’s public television star and Pittsburgh native.
“I encourage all Pennsylvanians to join in this tradition. And they don’t have to wait for 1-4-3 Day to show compassion and generosity to others, particularly with recent world events,” Wolf said. “1-4-3 Day is just one moment in time that we can practice the kindness and gratitude that are integral to the spirit in all Pennsylvanians.”
Mister Rogers Neighborhood ran for 33 years (1968–2001) on PBS. Rogers used it as a forum to connect deeply with children, despite the physical distance the medium of television represented. On the air, he taught youngsters — as well as adults — the value of compassion, kindness, and being a good neighbor.
He routinely used the the numbers 1-4-3 as a shortcut way way of saying “I love you.” The numbers represent the number of letters in the words of the phrase. Reportedly, the idea came from a Boston lighthouse that flashed that sequence as a message to the public.
“With everything happening globally, we hope 1-4-3 Day inspires more generosity, more neighborliness, and more fellowship wherever kindness is needed,” said Carrie Fischer Lepore, of the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development.
Read more about the 1-4-3 Day at WETM 18 News.