December 28th, 1939- January 20th, 2022.
Rolland Love 82, of Overland Park, Kansas, passed away peacefully on January 20th, 2022.
An only child, growing up in The Ozarks created an idyllic life for him, aside from losing his dad at a very young age. He learned to fish, hunt and appreciate the world in a way that is not commonplace now for kids with video games and cell phones. He always says the internet has been the downfall of society and he is probably right. He helped run a fishing camp with his uncle where he conducted guided tours down the Jacks Fork and Current rivers. He ended up putting memories of his life growing up into words, in a series of books, short stories and blogs. He grew up in Summersville MO, a tiny town of about 500 people. He married his high school sweetheart, Marlyn Craig, at 19 and they had their first child Jeannie, in 1958. The young couple moved to Springfield MO, and then on to St. Louis, MO, where he started a career as a Respiratory Therapist at Barnes hospital. Daughter Janet was born in 1965.
His passion for Mark Twain and the history around the Lewis and Clark expedition grew into a tremendous amount of volunteer hours at Kaw Point, which became his passion over the past 20 years- making lifelong friends as they worked tirelessly to clean up the river and pay tribute to the amazing men and women who carried out the Lewis and Clark Expedition in 1804. He then took this experience and turned it into a mission to educate young people, giving talks in countless schools as he portrayed the role of Silas Goodrich, the expert fisherman on The Expedition. He encouraged young people to help their parents write their life stories, going into schools to give kids the script to go home and interview their parents and grandparents, so that their stories would live on. “ There has never been an uninteresting life “ is one of his favorite Mark Twain quotes. One of his other favorite’s and one which we have leaned on time and time again is ‘Most of what we worry about never happens.”
His positivity and easy connection with others is something to be emulated. He loved his family, dogs, friends, and enjoyed nothing more than spending time fishing and floating the rivers that he grew up appreciating so much. He never passed up an opportunity to make new friends, whether it was through volunteering, time spent at the Sylvester Powell Community Center in Mission playing pickle ball and hanging out with friends drinking coffee, or at his various writers groups. He also thoroughly enjoyed attending a weekly coffee that dear friend Steve Curtis of Urbanworks hosted every Friday and a new group of friends he made who met each Thursday as well.
Among his many accomplishments, Rolland co authored the first Apple Software directories in the early 80s and published several novels, short stories and even a cookbook with co author Mary-Lane Kamberg entitled Homegrown in the Ozarks, mountain meals and memories, which combined recipes and stories from his childhood. Rolland was also a repeat “actor” at KU Med Center helping med students with their studies.
Rolland was a lifelong Democrat and so outspoken on Facebook at times that he would get “kicked off.” He was always surprised to find that his comments about various politicians and social causes might create this dilemma and was happy when he was allowed back on, because he so enjoyed the banter and posting about his books, using it as a marketing tool every chance he could.
He accepted the diagnosis of Pulmonary Fibrosis with dignity and grace and was a gift to all who knew and loved him. He will be dearly missed but his legacy will live on in his writings, humor, and his family who adore him.
Rolland is survived by his wife Marlyn (Craig), daughters Jeannie Evans and Janet Chandler, son in laws Dennis Chandler and Tom Mika, as well as proud grandfather to Nickolas Evans, Jake, Lauren and Katherine Chandler and great-grandfather of baby Ryan Evans.