Born and raised in Leland, MS, Roland was an Eagle Scout, played tackle on the high school football team, and played trombone in the high school band. He graduated in 1938 as the class valedictorian.
Enrolling in Mississippi College in 1938, he joined the college band, which was a unit of the Mississippi National Guard. He was called into active duty in the U.S. Army in 1941, and served at Camp Blanding, FL and Camp Bowie, TX. After WWII began, Roland was accepted into Officer Candidate School where, upon graduation, he was commissioned a 2nd Lieutenant and assigned overseas for duty in Puerto Rico.
Roland was released from active duty in 1945, and re-entered Mississippi Collegewhere he received a Bachelor of Arts degree, with Special Distinction, in 1946. Desiring to become an attorney, he entered the University of Mississippi School of Law, graduating cum laude and received his J.D. in 1948.
Upon completing law school, Roland was admitted to the Mississippi Bar and opened his law off in Tylertown, MS. In 1951, he was hired by the Jackson law firm, Wells, Wells, Newman, and Thomas. He was made a partner in the firm in 1954.
Roland was a founding partner of Wells, Wells, Marble, and Hurst (now Wells Marble & Hurst, PLLC), when it was formed in 1968 and was the last surviving named partner. During over 40 years of practice with WM&H, he concentrated in the practice areas of real estate, corporate transactions and insurance defense. During his practice he handled real estate matters in 73 of the courthouses in the 82 Mississippicounties.
Roland was a Mason and Shriner, and as a WWII veteran, was active in the American Legion. He was elected Commander of the Mississippi District of the American Legion, and later as Vice Commander of the National American Legion. In civic affairs, Roland served in the Tylertown Rotary Club, as well as the Jackson and Fondren Civitan Clubs, where he was elected President of the Jackson Civitan club, Governor of the Mississippi District of Civitan, and a Southern Vice President of Civitan International. From 1996-2010 he served as a member of the Board of Directors and Secretary of the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame and Museum.
Roland was a devoted husband, father, and grandfather, who will be missed by all who knew him. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests that memorials be made to First Baptist Church of Jackson, Attn: Bobby Ray, P.O. Box 250, Jackson, MS, 39205-0250.