Roland Hoopes Parker – Shelburne
|July 19, 2012||Filled under Obituaries||
Roland Hoopes Parker of Wake Robin in Shelburne, passed away peacefully on June 30, 2012, at the age of 92. Roland was born in London, England, on June 8, 1920, to Roland Hoopes Parker Sr. and Emily Laura Parker. Roland grew up in England, but had a profound fascination with America. Roland Sr. had followed F.W. Woolworth to England to help open Woolworth Stores all over Europe. He married an English woman, Emily L. Marriott, and became an English citizen. When Roland Jr. was 19, he immigrated to the United States and took a job with Oneida Limited Silversmiths in Oneida, N.Y., and married Martha Bedford. They were married for 63 years. While in the process of becoming an American citizen, World War II broke out and Roland tried to return with the American armed forces to England, where his parents were enduring the nightly Nazi bombing of London. Ironically, he ended up on the other side of the world fighting in the Pacific with the American Air Force for two years. After the war, Roland returned to his job at Oneida Silversmiths and became Sales Manager for the Sterling Silverware Division. He eventually took early retirement after 27 years, and spent scores of productive years involved with his beloved family and the families of others. He was a great fundraiser and while living in Stuart, Fla., he and a few others started a much needed Boys and Girls Club for the children in Port Salerno. Martha and Roland also spent time in the Bahamas and were instrumental in the creation of a day nursery for the children of the many resort workers on Harbour Island, off of North Eleuthera. Moving to Vermont in 2004, to be near his sons and numerous grandchildren, Roland jumped right into philanthropic endeavors for the Burlington Boys and Girls Club, The Flynn Center, C.O.T.S. and the Stern Center, to name a few. He is survived by sons, Barry and wife, Patricia, of Richmond, and Jeffrey and wife, Michele, of Underhill Center; daughter, Pamela of Shelburne Falls, Mass.; 10 grandchildren; and 12 great-grandchildren. He was predeceased by his wife, Martha; and their son, David.