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.

Ways To Connect

Ken Crouse / Fall of Saigon Marines Association

The last two Americans killed in the Vietnam War, including an Iowa man, will be memorialized at the site of the old US Embassy in Saigon.   


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

The state’s most famous public servant died at the age of 90, and thousands of Iowans watched his final return home on this date in 1964.

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.

  

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. 


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.

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.

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. 

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.

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.

Capitol Mower

Jul 28, 2014
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.

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. 

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.

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. 

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. 

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. 

Day of Insects

Mar 30, 2014
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.

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

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. 

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.

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.

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.

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. Editor's Note: When rescuers returned to the tree in 2014, they found the prized specimen had fallen over, with no hope of saving it.

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.

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.

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.

In Uniform

Nov 11, 2013
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.

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.

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.

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.

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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