Kennedy Clay Roland

Kennedy Clay Roland

Kennedy Clay (“Kenny” or “P-Nut”) Roland, a lifelong resident of Lockhart, died suddenly but peacefully in his sleep at home on Wednesday, Jan. 21, 2015, at the young age of 52. He was born on Aug. 16, 1962.
Lockhart born and raised, Kenny was educated in the Lockhart public school system and graduated from Lockhart High School in 1980. He was a great athlete, and played three varsity sports – football, basketball and track. His classmates have fond and wonderful memories of the great times they shared.
Kenny was very driven by hard work and the opportunity to better his life, and the lives around him. He started working at Bluebonnet Electric Cooperative (BEC) on Sept. 16, 1980. He was a journeyman lineman and construction crew supervisor who would have marked his 35th anniversary with BEC later this year.
There wasn’t one day that Kenny ever complained about going to work. He loved his company, his co-workers and his customers; BEC was his second home, and he shared a brotherhood and sisterhood that words cannot explain. He went to work smiling and came home smiling, because every day was a good day!
Kenny was also a licensed contractor and homebuilder. He built three homes in the Lockhart area over the years. It was his passion, and what he wanted to do upon his retirement from BEC.
A natural born leader, both at work and in Lockhart, Kenny had goals, aspirations, vision and dreams. He became the first African-American to be elected to the City Council, and he proudly served the community as District 1 Councilmember from 1998-2010, and as At Large Councilmember from 2013 until 2015. In the words of US Representative Lloyd Doggett, “Kenny was passionate about public service and a true believer in giving back to his community. He was proud of his heritage and his community and constantly worked to the betterment of his city and the lives of his neighbors.”
In 2004, he organized the first MLK Parade in Lockhart, which had a record high attendance of approximately 450 people this year. In addition, he founded District 1 Pride, a non-profit organization that fosters greater community involvement and unity.
Kenny is a “record setter,” for sure! There were approximately 3,000 people in attendance at his viewing and funeral, which is a true testament to the legacy he left behind, the lives he touched, and the love we all had for this truly amazing man.
As we mourn this great loss and untimely death, also remember his big hugs, magnetic personality, encouraging words, his laughter, and always, his beautiful smile.
Kenny is survived by his wife, Catherine (Howshan) Roland, and their daughter, Kennedy Cecelia Roland, of Lockhart; three brothers: Harold Dean Roland, Clay Douglas Roland and James Polk Roland, all of Dale; four sisters: Margie Thompson, of San Antonio, Margaret Pansy and husband, Wallace, and Yvette Manning and husband, Carey, of Lockhart, and Edna Roland, of Austin; his in-laws, Mr. and Mrs. David Howshan, of Concord, Mass.; brother-in-law, David Howshan and wife, Jen, of Salisbury, Mass.; and sister-in-law, Christine Belanger and husband, Kevin, of Haverhill, Mass.; 26 nieces and nephews, 31 great-nieces and nephews, and 10 great-grand nieces and nephews, as well as many aunts, uncles and cousins.
He was preceded in death by his father, Preston Roland, Jr., his mother, Joe Irene (Walker) Roland, and his brother, Wallace Ray Swan.
The family wishes to express their sincere gratitude and deep appreciation for the outpouring of love, kindness, generosity and support shown during this difficult time. We are especially grateful to Bluebonnet Electric Cooperative for all of their generosity throughout this difficult time.
Kenny would now expect every one of us to continue the legacy that he started, and he would want us to do it with a smile!
The family requests that memorial donations in Kenny’s honor be made payable to District 1 Pride, c/o Frank Gomillion, 432 Trinity St., Lockhart, Texas, 78644.

20 Comments

  1. Bill Nance says:

    Kenny was a special kind of good. I’m a better person for having known him. My greatest heartfelt sympathy to his family and friends. He will be missed by many.

  2. Aurora Adams says:

    Even though my cousin Kenny Roland is no longer present with us, I know he is with the Lord. Cathy and Kennedy know that you are not alone and the family is here to support you both. Cousin Aurora (Atlanta, GA)

    • Cathy Roland says:

      Dear Aurora, thank you for all the love that you have given us all these years. You are very special to us and Kenny loved you very much! So grateful we are family! Love you

  3. Michelle Robbins says:

    My prayers go out to the Roland family.

  4. Mike and Fran Lozano says:

    Our prayers are with you. Heaven has a brand-new angel!

  5. linda ebner-kimball says:

    Our deepest condolences to you and your family cathy. A well know and kind soul will be missed by many. Sincerely, john and linda kimball

  6. Noel Smith says:

    Kenny Roland was a true friend and a wonderfully giving person. In the late ’80’s/early 90’s he gladly gave up his Saturday off to help work cattle with Edward and I when good help was hard to find. Always calm and pleasant, he was a joy to work with and kept the laughs coming. My condolences to his family, and please know that his contributions to the county and especially to Lockhart will certainly move society forward. Thanks Kenny.

  7. Dwayne Mitschke says:

    I enjoyed knowing and working with Kenny for over 30 years. I will never forget him. Prayers being sent for his family.

  8. Frank & Peggy Coggins says:

    Our condolences and prayers to the family. Kenny’s wisdom and energy will be missed.

  9. Pamela Hemphill says:

    KENNY!!!! We weren’t done with you yet! Our hearts are broken! God had different plans. We will always remember your smiles and laughter and the love you showed your family and friends. We’ll be seeing you in our own time sweet brother!

  10. Jane Moore says:

    Kenny was one of the most inspirational, genuinely GOOD people that the Lockhart area ever will ever be able to claim as their own. Gone way too soon. My heart and prayers go out to his family and friends. Kennedy, your memory marches on…like an eternal flame!

  11. Robert Ellis says:

    Kennedy Roland was not only a faithful Board Member of Pegasus Schools, Inc., he was one of the greatest men I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. I met Kenny when I was 10 years old (he was 7). We spent the next 45 years in mutual admiration. I helped him fulfill his dream of building a home for his mother. He helped me in fulfilling my dream of opening a home for abused boys from across the state. Kenny has been on my Board of Directors since 2007 and helped me pull through the toughest times we have ever experienced. Anyone who had the pleasure of knowing him knows what I mean when I say I will miss his smile, his honesty, his love for community, family, Cathy, and little Kennedy. My God, I will miss him as much as I do my Mentor Weldon Johnston. They knew each other well. Between Joe Roland, Kenny, Weldon, and Milton Carter, I have never known such great friends.

    Robert Ellis
    Founder/CEO
    Pegasus Schools, Inc.

  12. connie coleman says:

    To my loving cousin’s we are up lifting the family in prayer so sorry for your loss

  13. Carol Jene "CJ" Ehrlich Watts & Calvin A. Watts says:

    Our prayers are with your family. Lockhart and Caldwell County lost a great person and community leader. Heaven has a new angel and leader looking after all of us. Proud to have known Kenny. Carol Jene “CJ” Ehrlich Watts and husband Calvin A. Watts.

  14. Debra Shannon (Roland) says:

    Kenny you will be deeply miss but we all have a time and season. The lord said cry when they born and rejoice when they die; cousin I enjoyed the time we did had together here on this earth, the laughter, the time we did talk, play as kids, seeing your smile, the hugs we had for one another, the memory was good and I thank God for that and one day we are going to have a big family reunion in the Kingdom of Heaven. I just have another guardian angel in heaven up above. I know when you went before the Father I know he said well done my child. I know when you arrived at the gates of heaven a big celebration it was to welcome you home.

  15. David Smith says:

    This is very saddening. Kenny was one of the most fun filled, happy, easy to be around, enjoyable people I have ever met. I didn’t know him well but it was evident that he enjoyed life, and his community and he will be dearly missed. He was truly a blessing to all he touched.

    David

  16. Congressman Lloyd Doggett says:

    As the first African American City Councilmember in Lockhart, Kenny Roland was a trailblazer and tireless community leader. Through his efforts with District 1 Pride, St. John’s Colony, and Juneteenth celebrations, he brought more neighbors forward to contribute to policy-making and ensure full participation for the Eastside. Kenny was a longtime friend and important source of good advice about community needs. His sudden passing is so unexpected. Only last Monday, he was leading our MLK March, which he helped to first initiate in Lockhart. My thoughts and prayers are with Cathy, Kennedy, and the entire Roland family for this untimely, tragic loss.

  17. Jerry Willms says:

    Good-bye old friend. See ya at the game!

  18. adios my brother, we’ll meet in heavy again to rule!

  19. I just recently found of Kennys’ passing. I want to express my deepest and sincere condolence to the Roland Family. We were blessed to have had a short time with such a magnificent human being.

    Rose Winn

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