Obituary of Roland D. Damiani
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Roland “Rollie” D. Damiani, Jr. a retired math teacher and football coach at Lexington High School passed away after an extended illness at his home. He was 90 years old. Rollie grew up in Beverly, MA and was a graduate of Beverly High School. The son of Italian immigrants, Roland and Barbara Damiani, he was an excellent student and athlete. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Salem State University, his first masters degree at Boston University, and his second masters in mathematics from Rutgers University, thanks to a National Science Grant. He taught math and computer science at Lexington High School for 36 years. As a teacher he wanted to give his students the skills they needed to succeed, to motivate them, to inspire, to teach them to think critically and independently, respect others, have confidence, and understand that we all make mistakes, but that learning from them is what is most important. He was a football coach for Lexington High for over 15 years and coached basketball for several years when called upon. Rollie also coached little league baseball in Burlington and helped as a board member. After his retirement, Rollie was an Adjunct Professor at Fisher Junior College and Middlesex Community College until he retired in 1994.
Rollie loved being on the go and staying active. He played golf occasionally but really enjoyed tennis, which he didn’t begin playing until he was in his 40’s. He was in several men’s tennis leagues, played in tournaments, and was quite competitive in his age division, winning the New England region in 1995, and making it to the USTA National Championships in the 50 and over 3.5 division. He was always very supportive of his wife Lucy in her career as well as in town political campaigns. He also had a love of standup comedy, and would often be asked or volunteer to be the master of ceremonies at retirement parties, wedding rehearsal dinners, and so on. He could tell jokes or “roast” a friend or family members for 30-45 minutes or more without any notes, making everyone laugh as though he had been working in comedy clubs and honing his craft for years.
Most important to Rollie was his family. He met the love of his life when they were both teaching in Lexington. They were a team, supporting, caring, and loving each other to the very end, after 59 years together. As a couple they were strong role models for their children with family, faith, and community being the foundation of how they lived their life. Rollie supported his children in all their stages of life, sharing his wisdom, using mistakes as teachable moments, being a moral compass, and cherishing every moment shared with them. Their vacation home in Mashpee has been the summer gathering spot for family and friends for over 30 years, filled with endless memories, laughter and love, the beach, and fire pits in the backyard. Rollie’s sense of humor, quick wit, and memory for jokes made time spent with him fun and entertaining. He will be remembered as a kind and generous man who was loved by all.
Rollie was the beloved husband of Lucy (Swink) Damiani. He was the loving father of Susan of Chelmsford, Stephen & his wife Jenine of Westford, and Michael & his wife Hanna of San Rafael, CA. He was the brother of the late Janice Bucco & her late husband Vito. He was the proud grandfather of Jake Damiani-Lessard, Owen, Nathaniel, Mia, Eleanor “Ellie”, Isabel, and George Damiani.
Visiting hours will be held at the Edward V. Sullivan Funeral Home, 43 Winn St., Burlington on Tuesday, Jan. 16 from 4-7pm. Funeral services will be held at the United Church of Christ, Congregational, 6 Lexington St., Burlington at 11am. on Wednesday, January 17.
Memorials in Roland’s name may be made to the United Church of Christ, Congregational, www.uccburlington.org.
For obituary, online guestbook, and video tribute see www.sullivanfuneralhome.net
Edward V. Sullivan
43 Winn Street
Burlington, MA 01803
Ph: (781) 272-0050