Rick Fredericksen

Correspondent

Rick Fredericksen is a Des Moines based correspondent for Iowa Public Radio.  He has been producing the Iowa Archives series since 2007. Rick joined Iowa Public Radio in 1995 after 13 years abroad. Prior to joining IPR, Rick worked in commercial radio and TV in Iowa and Hawaii. For 10 years, he was bureau chief for CBS News in Bangkok, Thailand, covering stories throughout Southeast Asia. He received a Peabody Award in 1989, for CBS radio coverage of the Tiananmen Square uprising in Beijing. He has also won numerous state, regional and national awards for his reporting. As a young Marine broadcaster, he covered the Vietnam War for the American Forces Vietnam Network in Saigon.

Rick attended the Department of Defense Information School in Indianapolis, and Drake University.

Rick’s favorite public radio program is River to River.

Pages

Iowa Archives
5:30 am
Sat October 25, 2014

Remembering President Hoover

The Hoover gravesite in West Branch
National Park Service

He was an engineer, a Quaker, and president of the United States. Fifty years ago today the only native Iowan to occupy in the White House was buried at his birthplace in West Branch. We reflect back on Herbert Hoover with historical recordings

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News
5:30 am
Thu October 16, 2014

Iowa's Combat Medic School

Final exam for Combat Life Savers
Rick Fredericksen Iowa Public Radio

Just outside Des Moines, in a building at Camp Dodge, medics and first responders are being trained under simulated battle conditions that look and sound like an episode of “Homeland,” or “24.” IPR’s Rick Fredericksen was there for the final exam.

  

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News
11:57 am
Fri October 3, 2014

Iowa's Newest Interstate?

The new section of Highway 5 south of Des Moines opened 12 years ago.
Rick Fredericksen Iowa Public Radio

Central Iowa officials are putting the brakes on a drive to designate a new interstate that wraps around Des Moines. The story from IPR’s Rick Fredericksen. 


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News
5:30 am
Thu September 18, 2014

Barnaby: Iowa's Oldest Animal?

Barnaby is on a vegetarian diet, primarily greens, but occasionally carrots and sweet potatoes
Rick Fredericksen Iowa Public Radio

He just could be the longest living animal in Iowa, not counting humans. His lifespan predates the end of World War Two and Iowa Public Radio’s Rick Fredericksen found him living a life of luxury in Des Moines.

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News
5:30 am
Fri September 5, 2014

Star-Spangled Birthday

Joseph Giunta conducts the Des Moines Symphony
John Pemble Iowa Public Radio

One week from today (Sept. 12), a commemoration begins for the song most-identified with America. It’s the bicentennial of the Star-Spangled Banner and Iowans are getting ready for the nationwide observance. IPR’s Rick Fredericksen has the story, with a technical assist from John Pemble.

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News
9:41 am
Mon August 25, 2014

Iowa Civil War Loss Revived

Proposed engraving for Littleton Memorial Monument by designer Will Thomson
Credit Will Thompson

Iowans know the story of the five Sullivan brothers who died when their ship was torpedoed in World War Two. Now, a different family loss, that was forgotten over time, is being revived by historians in southeast Iowa. 

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River to River
2:22 pm
Fri August 15, 2014

IPR’s Rick Fredericksen Remembers a Day with Robin Williams

Courtesy of Rick Fredericksen

Robin Williams' death earlier this week sparked many stories of how he touched the lives of his fans and the people he met.

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News
5:30 am
Fri August 15, 2014

Inside "Iowa Outdoors" Magazine

Iowa Outdoors is printed every two months, with limited exposure online
Rick Fredericksen Iowa Public Radio

In this ‘digital age,’ from telephones to newspapers, there’s a rare magazine that is flourishing as a hard copy edition. Of all places, it is published by state government. We go inside Iowa Outdoors.

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News
5:30 am
Mon July 28, 2014

Capitol Mower

Madeline McClure on her Toro
Rick Fredericksen Iowa Public Radio

You’ve never heard her name, but many Iowans admire her work; thousands have even sat on it.  Mattie McClure cuts the grass around the State Capitol and Iowa Public Radio’s Rick Fredericksen found her on the west lawn.

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News
5:30 am
Fri July 25, 2014

Thorazine: The Brain Drug

Mental patients received acute, intensive care in the wards of building 102
Rick Fredericksen Iowa Public Radio

It was 60 years ago when mental health professionals welcomed a new option for their patients. Instead of radical brain surgery and dangerous forms of shock treatment, doctors could prescribe a simple oral medication for the first time. An Iowa woman was a nurse during this crucial turning point and IPR’s Rick Fredericksen has her story. 

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Iowa Archives
5:30 am
Wed July 16, 2014

United Flight 232 Remembered

Impact zone at Sioux City's Gateway Airport
Iowa National Guard cameramen

Iowa's worst air disaster is being commemorated this coming weekend. It was 25 years ago when United Flight 232 wobbled into Sioux City for a crash landing that killed 112 passengers. Our historic sound project remembers that tragic day with audio recordings going back to July 19, 1989. Reporter Durrie Bouscaren contributed to this story.

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Iowa Archives
5:30 am
Thu June 5, 2014

Iowans Eager for New Panama Canal

The Panama Canal will mark 100 years of operation in August.
Joe Noonan

We all make time saving short cuts every day, but none could compare to one of the most important short cuts in history. The Panama Canal turns 100 this summer and a massive expansion project has Iowans predicting good things on several fronts. 

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News
5:30 am
Tue May 6, 2014

Miscanthus: Crop of the Future?

A stalk of miscanthus resembles a thin bamboo fishing pole.
Rick Fredericksen Iowa Public Radio

It could be Iowa’s next energy crop: a relative of sugar cane, that looks like bamboo. It’s about to become much more abundant in a state dominated by corn and soybeans. 

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News
5:30 am
Mon April 7, 2014

From Ash to ISU Keepsakes

A prototype of the ISU keepsake box.
Credit Scott Dahl / ISU Alumni Association

Iowa State University has found a silver lining in the infestation of beetles that are attacking ash trees. It’s a creative recycling story, reported by Iowa Public Radio’s Rick Fredericksen. 

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News
5:30 am
Sun March 30, 2014

Day of Insects

The emerald ash borer exhibit at the Day of Insects event.
Rickk Fredericksen Iowa Public Radio

It sounds like the title of a horror movie, but the people who attended the “Day of Insects” have an appreciation for the six-legged creatures that we share our lives with. One specimen in particular, caught the attention of Iowa Public Radio’s Rick Fredericksen.

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News
5:30 am
Thu March 27, 2014

Veterans: Lobotomies to Meditation

A common kitchen ice pick was a prototype instrument used in one type of lobotomy.
Rick Fredericksen Iowa Public Radio

From radical brain surgery, to drug therapy and meditation, Iowa veterans have done it all while coping with mental illness in the aftermath of war. Treatments have come a long way since lobotomies were performed on World War II vets in Knoxville.  

See the Wall Street Journal investigation

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News
5:30 am
Wed February 5, 2014

Indian Motorcycles Bolster Manufacturing Base

Polaris Industries has 800 northwest Iowa Workers.
Rick Fredericksen Iowa Public Radio

Manufacturing continues to be the lead sector of the economy in Dickinson County, thanks, in part, to Polaris Industries. The company has been turning out Indian motorcycles for more than six months. Part two of a two-part story. 

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News
5:30 am
Tue February 4, 2014

Indian Motorcycles: Made in Iowa

A 2014 Indian moves through the Polaris assembly line in Spirit Lake.
Rick Fredericksen Iowa Public Radio

Exactly six months after they were unveiled at the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, Polaris Industries cannot keep up with the demand for Indian motorcycles. The iconic brand is produced exclusively in Spirit Lake. Part one of a two part story.

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News
5:30 am
Sat February 1, 2014

Holly, Valens, Big Bopper Remembered

Credit Bob Hale

The annual tribute to Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and The Big Bopper is winding down in Clear Lake as fans remember the plane crash that ended the careers of three talented rock and roll superstars. We talk with the man who emceed the tragic Winter Dance Party of 1955.

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News
5:30 am
Wed December 18, 2013

The Principal Singers

The Principal Singers at Illahee Hills Retirement Center
Rick Fredericksen Iowa Public Radio

It is the season for holiday classics, like Bing Crosby, Andy Williams, or the Chipmunks singing Christmas songs. But caroling is also surviving, even in corporate America.

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News
5:00 am
Mon December 2, 2013

Champion Ash Trees Threatened

The record black ash is 114' tall with a circumference of 9'.
Univ. of Iowa Arborist Andrew Dahl

Two enormous ash trees are record holders on the front line of the Emerald Ash Borer in eastern Iowa: the state's largest known white ash, in Fort Madison, and the biggest black ash in the nation, south of McGregor. Medical treatment may be on the way for the national champion black ash. 

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News
12:05 am
Fri November 29, 2013

Ash Tree Removal=$3,000,000,000+

The Emerald Ash Borer threatens millions of ash trees in Iowa.
USFS Region 5

A little green bug could end up costing Iowa billions of dollars in the coming years, as the state comes to terms with an Asian beetle sweeping across the Midwest.

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News
3:30 am
Fri November 22, 2013

Belin on the Murder Weapon

David Belin shown testifying in a still-frame from You Tube.
Credit YouTube

A Des Moines attorney was a key figure in the official inquiry into President Kennedy's assassination. David Belin investigated the rifle that made history 50 years ago.

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News
9:27 am
Thu November 21, 2013

Hugh Sidey Remembers the Moment

Cover a book authored by Hugh Sidey.
Credit mjkghk/flickr

As Americans commemorate the assassination of President Kennedy, we also remember the respected Iowa reporter who was covering the president on that fateful day in Dallas.

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Iowa Archives
11:38 am
Mon November 11, 2013

In Uniform

USA.gov

In war or in peace, thousands of Iowans have served in the armed forces.  With both archival audio and original interviews, "In Uniform" honors and remembers Iowa veterans who sacrificed and served the country since the Civil War all the way up to the War on Terror.

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News
5:30 am
Mon November 11, 2013

POW Bracelet Comes Full Circle

A POW family group launched the bracelet project to raise awareness of torture and poor conditions.
Bernie Contreras

They were known as "POW bracelets," a symbolic metal band bearing the name of a Vietnam POW, or a man missing in action. More than 40 years after the prisoners came home, a Florida man rediscovered the bracelet he wore as a teenager and traced it back to a Navy veteran in Des Moines. We interviewed both men for Veterans Day.

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News
8:41 am
Wed October 16, 2013

Bob Feller Act of Valor Award

The bronze bust that is the Bob Feller Act of Valor Award.
Credit Bob Feller Act of Valor Award Foundation

Three Americans won the inaugural Bob Feller Act of Valor Award, announced in honor of Iowa's most famous baseball player.

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News
5:30 am
Tue October 15, 2013

Mission Change for Iowa Air Guard

MQ-9 Predators will be piloted from Des Moines.
U.S. Air Force

The fight to save Iowa's last jet fighter squadron is history; Des Moines' F-16s are gone and training for the next mission is well underway.

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News
11:24 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Steamboat Exhibit Shuts Down

Cannon balls and other supplies that are being unboxed for the Steamboat Bertrand exhibit.
Credit DeSoto National Wildlife Refuge

Two years after massive flooding along the Missouri River, work to bring back a treasured museum exhibit has been halted.

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News
12:50 pm
Sun September 8, 2013

End of an Era

The wing commander's F16
Rick Fredericksen Iowa Public Radio

One-hundred-ten years after the Wright Brothers made aviation history, a ceremony was held to commemorate the end of manned flight by a unit of the Iowa Air National Guard.

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