BIOGRAPHY: Robert J. Rogers was born on November 21st, 1953 in Toledo, Ohio. With his two older brothers, he grew up in a small farm town in northwestern Ohio. In 1963, Bob and his family; his mother was a fourth grade teacher, his father was an accountant, moved to Sandusky, Ohio. While at Sandusky High School, Bob sang in the choir, and played in the marching, dance, and concert band. He also threw discus on the track team.
Each summer he played Dixieland trombone at the Cedar Point Amusement Park in the world-famous Hobo Band. The bands fame culminated by appearing as one of the dance teams on the Miss Teenage America Pageant in Fort Worth, Texas. But when Bob was a senior, his life completely changed. He had an extraordinary English teacher who taught him how to write. And write he did.
After Bob's freshman year at Ohio State University, he traveled to Europe -- ten countries in twenty-eight days -- with a national orchestra and choir out of Pittsburgh. One of the more memorable venues was singing in an eight hundred year old church north of Amsterdam. The music just exploded off the earthen walls. And for the finale, the choir surrounded the audience and sang a cappella -- "I'd Like to teach the world to sing" -- bringing everyone to tears. What a moment! What a memory!
While at Ohio State, Bob was an active member of Phi Delta Theta fraternity. He also tried out for, and made, the prestigious Ohio State University Marching Band. And during those four years, he marched in three Rose Bowl Parades in Pasadena. Bob also threw discus on the track team competing at many NCAA meets including the Penn Relays in Philadelphia. And on the side, Bob wrote term papers for other students. Fifty bucks. A thousand words. Any subject except the sciences. And he could do it in under an hour. It paid for a lot of beer, and a lot of dates. One of his papers won an award, and another helped a student graduate.
After college Bob took a catering job with a hotel company outside of Chicago. Several years later as Vice President of Marketing, he wrote and taught from a manual on hotel sales and marketing. His meteoric rise was well deserved. But there was a price to pay for climbing the ladder so quickly. And that price, was his life!
In November 1990, Bob received a double kidney/ pancreas transplant at Duke University Medical Center in Durham, North Carolina. That surgery saved his life. Another life-saving moment came when they rolled him out of intensive care onto the transplant floor. A nurse walked into his room, and into his life, and Bob and Virginia have been together ever since. In May 1999, they were married on the shores of Lake Keowee.
As if destiny knew what was needed, Bob discovered the Duke surgeons had made a catastrophic mistake that killed his transplanted kidney. And had it not been for Virginia's skills to counter the mistakes, Bob would have died.
While enduring over fifteen years of corrective surgery, blood transfusions, hemodialysis, and a second kidney transplant at Piedmont Hospital in Atlanta, Bob bought a book at Barnes & Noble on screenwriting. When his research was complete concerning the medical mistake, he finished his first play titled, 'Patient Friendly'. It turns out Bob's suffering occurred for all the wrong reasons.
Since then he's written five more plays! "The Salt Box" - an unlikely romance between a Union soldier and a southern belle during the Civil War; "Hell on Neptune"- a teen builds a ray gun forcing the family to flee from everyone; "Neptune's Horizon"- the sequel to "Hell on Neptune" - bringing the Conner family back to the United States with a weapon that'll rock your socks off; "Dakota Caves - 2 Miles" - a short horror screenplay involving a horrible alien invader with three things on their mind, and they're all deadly. And as of August 8, 2016, the feature version of "Dakota Caves - 2 Miles". It's framed similar to "War of the Worlds", but without the divorce thread!
Currently Bob and Virginia reside in Simpsonville, South Carolina with their four-legged son, Duncan. And yes, he watches and barks at the TV!
(And the moral of the story is, no matter what you've endured in the past, you're one keystroke away from changing your future.