06/03/1985 - 28/12/2017
Hemmant Cemetery Chapel, 500 Hemmant and Tingalpa Road Hemmant
Tuesday, 09 January, 2018 at 01:00 pm
Family and friends are invited to attend a Service to Celebrate Roland's Life which will be held on Tuesday 9/1/2018 at the Hemmant Cemetery Chapel, Hemmant Tingalpa Road Hemmant. Commencing at 1.00 p.m. followed by a burial in the grounds of Hemmant Cemetery. At families request no flowers instead donation can be made to Branches Lifestyle Support
The first beautiful memory I have of Roland was when, in my first few very nerve racking shifts with Branches, I sat down to read a book, mainly to Geoff. I was unde the watchful, experienced eye of Tammy, so her and Roland came to listen in. The book was the lively version of “Christmas in Australia” on a hot ol summer’s day, etc etc, talking about the hot old rusty ute and many other fun “Australianisms”. I virtually “sang” the book to the men with a good rhythm. Needless to say Geoff loved it, but when I looked up, I saw Roland’s complete eye contact showing that he was fully engaged in the reading session too. He melted me that day, and I always knew that if all else failed, a good book reading session would bring a smile. Thanks Roland for putting life into perspective
I will share my perspective about Roland since I know some amazing people who was in his life who knew him more longer than me. I only knew him for nearly 2 years worked under Branches. He was an amazing bloke I kid you not. His beautiful eyes and cheesy smile light up the entire house each time I walked in. He taught me lots of things that I didn’t acknowledged until I moved back home in Melbourne few years ago. His traits - don’t sweat small stuff, when things gone wrong, tomorrow is a new day. Don’t talk about yesterday. When he had one of those rough day, he manage to break the storm to get through the bright sunny with rainbow with lots of positive vibes. He will do it all over again. What a champ!?? Whenever he responded to me, he bring out of his big smile and his specific laugh, his hands rubbed on legs, he was such happy human being. (I am sure he does that to everyone) I remembered one time when he had one of the many seizure, It was my first hand experienced by myself -it was late at night, I knew the protocol but I was extremely nervous but his eyes just calm me down with Tammy who is a lifesaver with million text messages back and forward. Once he has settled. He looked at me and smiled then went to sleep. That type of the attitude we need more on this Earth. He was a bulletproof. He just get on with it. We need to learn more from his friends in Branches, I am lucky enough to learn some of Roland’s traits and his friends’. Whenever I do things in my life- Those clients with their traits have always whisper through my ear to remind me small things every now and then. Roland just reminded me of the quote that stuck with me forever “Within each sunrise; we start anew”. ?? Roland, now you are in the most beautiful mansion in the heaven, with a mega swimming pool and unlimited top chocolate milk (water) purifier . Go and fly soar high as an eagle, look down to us with your cheesy smile. Your spirit will always be there in Cypress and everywhere your family and friends go.?? It’s not goodbye, its see you later and I am honoured to get know you for a short time. Thank you for the life lesson. ?? Caitlin
Chris went to school with Roland at Darling Point they have had many years together through Branches. Yesterday when we took Chris out he randomly said" Bye Roland" . He will always be missed. Xx Roland" . He will be missed but he is now an angel
I remember the lovely time I had with you Bob when I came to Brisbane and we visited Roland who shared such a beautiful smile. He will have a special place in heaven with Jesus.
Roland you spoke with your sparkling Blue eyes and cheeky smile.Many fun times were shared with you, each and everyone will live on in our memories for ever. You can now run as fast as you can through the abundance of flowers and sunshine in Heaven, a place of happiness and love. Thank you for being our friend, we will miss you, but never forget you. Your Friends Lauren, Angela, Yvette and Karen. Rest In Peace
Messages from old Stanley Terrace Respite staff where most were read to Roland during palliative care : Michelle Birrell – while holidaying in USA. Thinking of Roland and his family. Good thoughts your way too Wendy. Susan Kinobe (Anderson) Townsville – My poor young man. I loved it when he smiled...... he lit up the room and was so mischevious. He used to love wandering in the garden at his house and loved spraying water over me when I was starting his shower. Boy these are tough times. Thinking of you all. Thanks for giving us these great opportunities and memories. We are better off from working in this sector. Adam Darragh – Gold Coast. Please let him know that I remember him coming to watch me play for the Bullets and his eyes would light up whenever he came to the Basketball. His enormous smile is infectious and I just loved seeing him wear his Bullets jersey with pride. I had some fun times working with him at Branches, not so fun when he had an accident though. Please pass on my thoughts to the family Susan Kinobe – Great memories. Gosh 32 Roland! What a handsome young man. I used to also curse him when he used to run off on me when we went for a walk on Wynnum foreshore.... I couldn’t keep up. Please tell the family I am thinking of them. Angela Rozynksi – Gold Coast – Wow 14years at Branches! Roland has lived a lifetime of fun and made many magical memories with great friends, family and staff in that time. Memories of great house parties with Roland greeting everyone and being “King of his castle”. He loves life and makes everyone laugh. Thoughts and prayers with the family and staff. Kerri Player (Watts) Townsville – Smiley Roland. In your face with his happiness. Shopping for Converse shoes with him on the Gold Coast, dressing up to go out for dinner, boat rides, basketball games. Love to you Roland. Linda Lilley –Brisbane – A couple of very strong Roly memories for me. The first was in the Stanley Terrace Days. We had gone to watch the Bullets play and Geoff decided to grab the hair of a young girl. While we were all distracted by Geoff Roly decided that was the perfect time to let it up the stairs and out of the Convention Centre. You were so fast Roly. My other funny story is Branches related, I was working at Jacaranda on a craft day and rang Tammy to say I was very concerned that there was a very strong burning smell in the house. Tammy suggested could it be the fire place? I was extremely embarrassed but Roly though it was the funniest think ever then proceeded to spend the rest of the day laughing at me. Thanks Roly for making life fun. Love to you xxx Michelle Moynihan – I just keep hearing in my head..... car car car car car car car Kerri Player – I remember at a birthday party of his when he was about 13, he got a bit over exuberant with the candle blowing and flung a huge strip of saliva over the cake and then Bob asked who wanted a slice and no one put their hand up. Good way to get all the cake yourself Roland! Michelle Moynihan – sending lots of love to Roland wishing him peach and comfort in his last days. Rowena Gill – Miles – Thanks for the updates. Thinking of everyone and can just imagine that big cheeky grin. Adam Darragh – please give our love to the family. Our thoughts are with him. Michelle Warman – So sad for the family and for all of his friends near and far, a walk down memory lane, seems a life time ago xx please give him a hug and share with him how much we all treasure these memories both good and not so good Jo Walters – Melbourne – It is so sad to hear about Roland sending much love to him, I will light a candle for him with hope it helps to guide him on this journey Katie Fairweather – Hobart – Thanks for the updates- such a hard time for his family and friends and all you wonderful Branches friends. Send Roland my lovexxxx Susan Kinobe – RIP Roland. Our thoughts are with you all Wendy xxxx Michelle Warman – RIP beautiful man xxx my love and thoughts are with all that knew him and loved him.xx Kerri Player – Vale Roland Katie Fairweather – Sending love and thoughts to you Wendy and his family (including his Branches family) His big smile will be dearly missed xxxx Michelle Birrell – thinking of you all today. Thankyou Tammy xo Leigh Miller (Searchfield) – Gold Coast – RIP Roland Andrea Hinkley – Run Free Roalnd RIP Erin Kerr (Kelly) Gold Coast – Thinking of you all x Rowena Gill – thoughts are with the family and everyone. Rest Easy. Susan Kinobe – its so wonderful that Branches is such an integral part of his tribute. In this time of sadness, rejoice in what an amazing contribution you have made to Roland and his family. I tis so beautiful that Geoff and Justine are playing a key role.... so beautiful. Great work Branches staff. Thanks for all that you do.
Sarah Carnes – Brisbane. So sorry to hear this news. Thanks for letting me know. The poor guy. He has had it tough the last few years. Remembering how cheeky he was in the pool, jumping in and out splashing everyone. And how he found my taste in movies terrible and one day dropped to the ground in hysterics outside the cinema after he was disgusted with the choice. Or how much he loved Wellington Point park. Running around and basking in the sun. Kyna Sully – while holidaying in Germany Hi there Wendy, Oh Im so very sad to hear this news. His dear parents must be very sad too. I have very fond memories of my times looking after Roland. He taught me so much during the nearly two years I worked with him. Mostly his incredible smile which would light up his whole face, especially when he went driving in the car or horse riding. He had incredible love to give and you could never be upset at him for too long. I did more exploring around Brisbane when I supported him than Ive ever done since. I’m so sorry I am away and not able to visit. Please give him a hug and lots of love from me xxoo Brad Kaefer – came from camping on Stradbroke, lives Canberra This is sad news. Roland is a true lightning rod for people – he draws them and passes on a real spark of energy. My memories of Roland are many. Taking various drives around Wynnum, going to the Wynnum waterfront. Roland most of the time happily cruising along with my little brown dog Barra and me. Him giving Barra a cuddle in his lap and Barra would like his face (just once) and Roland would turn away but pat him a bit. Roland loved running away for a bit of a sprint to help us all with our exercise. I think my sprint readiness was at its peak with Roland. Going for a swim with him was great, he enjoyed that alot. Taking Roland horseriding was fun. He was really good at riding horses and we had lots of good trips there and back. When you shared a joke with Roland, and he thought it was funny, it was the best thing ever! He has a glorious smile that is infectious and disarming. He loved riding in fast moving vehicles, feeling the wind on his face (sometimes). I remember holidaying with him and with his Mum, Dad and sister. Travelling a long, long way in the train to Emerald. Visiting friends on their farm, seeing the animals and their property. Having a hug with roland was something special. He is a special man and I miss him lots. A big hello, I miss him and a special hug from Brad OX Kirsten Mackenroth – Dublin, Ireland. I am so sorry to hear this news. Roland is a wonderful man and taught me so much over the years I worked with him. His smile was always huge and he was always happy to see you and have a hug. He will be greatly missed by many people who have had the pleasure to know him. Jenny Zussino (McAfee) – Gladstone – Big hugs to Roland, such sad news. I am glad he has been having some smiles though Sharni Green – holidaying in New York – So sorry to hear this news. His cheeky cheesy grin is what I remember most about Roland. Missing the Branches family and sending hugs, thoughts and prayers. Rachel Tuitupo (Sherry) – Brisbane. Will be forever grateful for life lessons Roland has taught me over the years. And the cheeky laugh usually at something silly I had done. Heart with you all x Kirsten Mackenroth – Merry Christmas to Roland and all the staff. Hope he is settled. Kirsten Mackenroth – Please pass on my sympathies to all the Branches staff and his family. I am glad Tammy was with him. He was happy then. Thinking of you all at this time. Jenny Zussino – Thinking of you all and big hugs to Roland’s family and all the staff xx Brad Kaefer – Blessings and condolences to family friends and all the Branches family. Pleased Roland passed on, on his terms. I hope in the coming days that as we reflect and connect, we think of more and more joyous, significant occasions that we spend and learnt with Roland. Sarah Carnes – please pass on all my love. I am glad Roland was surrounded by the people he loved most xx Kyna Sully – please pass on my sympathies to all. Its so lovely to know that Roland was supported by those he loved so much xo I am so sad I cannot make the funeral as will be flying home from Europe. Sharni Green – sad to hear. My sympathies and love to family, friends and Branches staff. Rachel Tuitupo – I am devastated I cannot make the funeral as I fly to Melbourne early that morning. Will arrange to come by to the casket the weekend before.
So sorry for your loss. You provided a wonderful life for Roland. Hold on to the happy memories.
Bob, Mark & I remember the lovely time we had with you Bob when we came to Brisbane and we visited Roland who shared such a beautiful smile. He will have a special place in heaven. Roland is such a loving and smiling boy, he never gives up his faith for his God with in this 32 years, and now he is with the Lord. The Lord Gives and the Lord takes away, Blessed be the Name of the Lord, Amen. Rolland, you will always be remembered by your family's and your family friends. Roland R.I.P., When the Roll is Called up yonder, we will be there. AMEN.
Dear Bob and Sue and Family, Please accept our condolences on the passing of your dear boy.We are glad that we saw Roland when he visited you at the Green House on each of the two occasions we were there in 2013 and'14.. We were impressed how you related to him with love, compassion and support. We could see him responding to that. Also we witnessed Tammy's unique devotion to him. I have on my desk the photo and card you sent in July '12. The photo shows you and Sue and Roland taken after a hospital stay. I mentioned that he had completed the last battle. At the end of the last Narnia book called the "last Battle" it tells of the characters going to a place which is like a story "which goes on forever in which every chapter is better than the one before" Praise God that Roland is there. We pray for grace for you in The Shadowlands whom are coming on behind. With love and Prayers, Colleen and Ivan
Dear Sue and family, Sending lots of love and thoughts during this heavy time. Hugs and kisses Jess
Dear Sue and Bob and Roland's wonderful family, and every one who has had the privilege of knowing Roland and working with him, Roland's short but very full life has enriched many. He taught me more about autism than any textbook or lecture. His enjoyment of life and sense of humour, his amazing tolerance of illness and the capacity to bounce back, time and again, have not only drawn out the best in those who knew Roland, but have testified to his love of God and God's love for him. He is now free of the constraints of his earthly body and is living life to the full in God's presence. But he leaves a Roland-shaped space in the lives of all who knew and loved him. My thoughts and prayers reach out in love to Roland's vast 'Circle of Friends'. Helen
My sincere condolences to all. It is with great sadness to hear the passing of dear Roland. I have many fond memories of working with Roland but my one most beautiful memory is when we were gardening out the back of the house and laying soil on the ground. All three men (Roland, Geoff and Justin) were helping myself and Tammy. Once we were done, we were already dirty so we decided to roll around in the soil of which Roland could not stop laughing hysterically the whole time, as he rolled himself around at one point he poked his head up and had the biggest grin and a dirt stained nose. We had so many fun times and Roland you taught me a great deal of which I have never forgotten and I wish I could be there to say goodbye. I pray that you look over us and give us that friendly smile :) Aleks
Roland you are a 'gift' to each who shared life with you. Blessings go with you, the world is a poorer place now. Love Catherine
Dear Christina and family, We are so sorry to hear of your loss of dear Roland. We can only imagine the terrible grief you are all feeling right now. We also want to acknowledge the effect your amazing love for Roland had on us. Your care and concern for him and your dedication to finding care for him that was so loving and thoughtful was an inspiration for us. We have told several other friends of your thoughtful decision-making in an effort to help their hearts too during the experience of very difficult care related decision-making for a loved one. Thank you for your inspiration and for allowing us to witness your great love of Roland. Much love and kind regards to you all at this time of great pain, Tanya and Daniel
Sending lots of love to the Pitt family, and all who loved Roland. Though I hadn’t seen him in many years, I remember playing together as children, and was so sad to hear of his passing. Though I’m unable to attend today, I’ll be thinking of you all. Love, Ellen x
Hi This is a link to Roland's slideshow through dropbox https://www.dropbox.com/preview/RP%20Final%20draft.mp4?role=personal
Here's the pic Aleks :). Roland certainly claimed your white sunnnies for a long time too.
Cruising with Roland and Tammy 2015
Sending you our very deepest sympathies and love, Jitka and Mark Kochanek and Jitka and Jiri Smahel.
Today is your Birthday Happy Birthday Franci :) I hope there is a party for you today. And you have a delicious chocolate cake full of candles. And you get to unwrap a special present. Maybe a great pair of shoes that will let you run that bit faster. If you listen hard you just might hear Justin's belly rumbling laughter and Geoff's clapping as we share our stories and photos of you. You are gone from our sight but all the memories and your big smile and bright eyes will never leave my heart. A smile is the shortest distance between two people. Think of you every day But this day is very special Happy Birthday Roland!
These are the words from two poems that were written on the piece of paper that Torr (8) threw into Uncle Roland's grave: Full many a gem of purest ray serene The dark unfathomed caves of ocean bear. Full many a flower is born to blush unseen And waste its sweetness on the desert air. Gray's 'Elegy' 1751 Lo! some we loved, the loveliest and the best, That Time and Fate of all their Vintage prest, Have drunk their cup a round or two before, And one by one crept silently to Rest. Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam XXI These are poems that Sue' s dad, Val Johnston, knew off by heart, and loved to recite. He passed away in 1990.
Happy Birthday Sue! Thoughts are with you.
Thinking of you! Happy Birthday Grant.
Roland and Tammy at Newton Faulkner concert. Roland's favourite artist!!!!
Roland and Sue 2016 cruise
Cruising with Roland and Tammy 2015
Roland and Tammy cruising 2017