During the West Virginia Symphony's annual Christmas concert, conductor Grant Cooper reminded the audience that "Frosty the Snowman" was written by a West Virginian: Walter "Jack" Rollins (1906-1973) from Keyser, Mineral County. As reporter Doug Imbrogno explained a year ago, when Rollins was a child, he entertained his blind mother by writing poems for her. Years later, after working at New York's Penn Station, he joined songwriter Steve Nelson and eventually produced 500 songs. Rollins wrote the lyrics and Nelson the melody for "Here Comes Peter Cottontail," which sold more than 1 million copies and was recorded by many singers. Likewise, "Frosty" was another hit that became a children's book and animated movie. Rollins also wrote "Smokey the Bear" and a slew of other works.
After the hideous massacre of Connecticut grade-school children, Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., issued condolences saying "all we can do" is offer prayer and comfort to victim's families. But we don't think that's all America can do. Instead, bold leaders could pass safety laws to keep guns out of dangerous hands.
Last week, misled by a circulating email, we said Wednesday's date of 12/12/12 was the last triple-number date until Jan. 1, 3001. However, alert readers pointed out that Jan. 1, 2101, can be written 1/1/1, and a year later, Feb. 2 will be 2/2/2, etc.