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GUNS Magazine November 2011 Digital Edition - Page 90
all for 10¢. The fact Roy was born Leonard Slye in Ohio and a fellow Buckeye made him even more special to me. I was fortunate to grow up at a time when we had heroes, something oday’s kids are so advantaged they can almost be today’s kids have a hard time finding, and Roy Rogers was right at the top of considered disadvantaged as they have so much the list as “King of the Cowboys.” you have to wonder how they can appreciate anything. Of course, it was all make-believe. it’s not their fault; blame it on parents and grandparents Even at our young age we knew movies who want to give them “more than we had” and, in some were not real, but that did not keep ways, wind up giving them less. Things can’t replace time us from being positively influenced by cowboy stars such as Roy. In my later invested in their lives. years I discovered Roy Rogers and his When my generation was growing Although my stepdad had virtually wife Dale Evans were real-life heroes up we had a real appreciation for the no education, he was a voracious reader. dedicating much of their life to helping few things we had. I didn’t realize at We always had books, magazines, and disadvantaged children. They adopted the time how poor we actually were. we got a special treat on Wednesdays. many such kids and in fact, Dale No government agency tried to sign us Although we lived in Ohio at the time, wrote a best-selling book titled Angel up, or politicians curry our favor. We this was the day you could pick up the Unaware which told of one of those didn’t have a car until I was 11-years special edition of a New York paper. So children. Roy and Dale were both old, so I didn’t think it was unusual to we got the Sunday comics early as well people of faith which they lived out go to the grocery store pulling a wagon. as a magazine section which always by helping others. Today, one of their My father died before I was a legacies is found in the Happy year old and mother remarried Trails Children’s Foundation. a few years later to a good man. Roy Rogers appeared in the He had virtually no education pages of GUNS in the early having dropped out of school days as he was more than just in the 4th grade to work in the a shooter on the silver screen. coal mines, but he always had He was an avid sportsman, a job, we always had a warm, hunter, fisherman, gun collector dry, clean house, although quite and staunch supporter of our small and nothing fancy, and Second Amendment rights. I mom always set a great table. I remember seeing him pictured don’t know how she managed on with a Weatherby rifle and so little money. earlier I lusted over the Schwinn Saturday evening was always bicycle he was sitting upon. a great treat as mom made a big Roy Rogers entertained several pot of popcorn on the stove and The Silver Screen Legends XIV commemorates Roy Roger’s 100th generations of kids and still sees made a large pitcher of Kool- birthday and consists of a pair of 5-1/2" Colt SAA .45s in a double to their needs today through Aid. How could we be poor with buscadero rig. This set was recreated by Jim Lockwood, Conrad the Happy Trails Children’s such treats? Sunday dinner was Anderson, Bob Lescovec, Mike Engstrom and Charles Sauer. Foundation which is located in always a roast or meatloaf so Roy’s longtime home of Apple we could have cold sandwiches in the had a centerfold of a movie star. When Valley, California. The foundation evening as we listened to Jack Benny I got a full color picture of Roy Rogers built the Cooper Home to provide for and Amos and Andy on the radio. I on Trigger rearing up on his hind legs abused children. This is a long-term thought surely even kings could not tacked up on my bedroom wall, I felt care facility and treatment center for live any better, and I’m saddened that as rich as a young kid could be. Roy severely abused boys. With 40 acres today’s kids miss these wonderful was my hero and it was a wonderful of high desert land it is a wonderful pleasures. We all seemed to be very Saturday afternoon when we could go setting for healing. happy with very little; so many of to town and see a double feature with today’s kids are so sad with so much. Roy, Trigger, Gabby and Dale Evans continued on page 89 The Silver Screen Legend xiv raffle. REMEMBERING ROY T 90 WWW.GUNSMAGAZINE.COM • NOVEMBER 2011