Smokey-the-Bear Turns 70

A look back at how Smokey-the-Bear got his start in preventing American forest fires.
1:28 | 08/09/14

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Transcript for Smokey-the-Bear Turns 70
today. He's evolved over the years and is even sending out selfies these days and blogging but as ABC's Brandi Hitt tells us, his message remains the same. Surprise! Reporter: Today, smokey the bear is turning 70. And still going strong. Smokey just gave me a bear hug. Reporter: As a symbol of wildfire prevention. I already posted it. ? Smokey the bear ? Reporter: Coming a long way since 1944 when he was created so forest fis could be protected while fire fighters served abroad. From hand-drawn posters to serious, and sometimes scary, television ads. Remember, only you can prevent forest fires. Reporter: Always delivering his trade. Mark: Line. Only you can prevent forest fires. Reporter: And people listened. Research showing 96 percent of Americans recognize smokey -- right up there with Santa Claus and Mickey mouse -- and he's become a more modern bear, posting his first selfie on Facebook. Even pharrell Williams making a fashion statement with his signature hat. Still determined to save the forest, smokey is willing to douse his own birthday cake with water. Now, showing a softer side at 70 with a big bear hug. Brandi Hitt, "ABC news," Los Angeles.

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