Bernard Roller

Obituary of Bernard Lee Roller

Bernard Lee Roller, 56, passed away suddenly, due to complications from surgery, on December 22, 2020, in San Jose, California.  Bernard was born on February 19, 1964, in Mountain View, California, to his loving parents Alfred and Gudrun Roller.  He grew up in a German Christian household, along with his younger brother Rodney and younger sister Judy, where German was his first language.

Bernard enjoyed an idyllic and simple childhood in Mountain View amongst the then neighboring apricot and cherry orchards.  He spent his summers going on family vacations, ice cream at Edy’s Parlor, skateboarding, playing baseball behind the nearby supermarket, and swimming on the Mountain View Dolphins team.  He also enjoyed participating in varsity baseball and varsity soccer while at school.  He was a fervent fan of Monday Night Football, watching his beloved Oakland Raiders, and rooting for his favorite German soccer team – Bayern Munich.

He attended Huff Grammar School in Mountain View and then Valley Christian Junior High/High School in San Jose.  He graduated from the University of Berkeley with a BS degree in microbiology and Immunology.  

He went on to have his first career in microbiology, as a chemical engineer, for over a decade at Read Rite.  Alongside he also enjoyed teaching traffic school on weekends and it is there where he first realized how much he enjoyed teaching.  When his company moved out of the area, he decided to change careers, ultimately receiving his teaching credential and a Master of Arts in Special Education from San Jose State University.  He spent the next fifteen years as a SPED teacher at Westmont High School eventually becoming the department head.  He felt at home at Westmont, where he truly enjoyed working with his fellow teachers, the staff and the administration.  He enjoyed all of the friendships that he made while teaching, continuing to keep in touch with many even after their retirement.  And he spoke often of the fun times they had together over dinner, at celebrations, and even taking a trip to Thailand together.   But he spoke most often of his students and how proud he was of the great progress they had and were continuing to make both in and outside of the classroom.  

Bernard was a caring and selfless man, he loved God, his country, his family, his neighbors, his fellow staff and his students.  He will be missed . . . until by faith we believe that we will see each other again.

Bernard is survived by his parents, Alfred and Gudrun Roller – of Santa Rosa, his brother Rodney, his wife Anna and their son Elijah - of San Jose; and his sister Judith, her husband Brian and their children, Mathew, Olivia and Emma - of Lake Oswego, Oregon.

In remembrance of Bernard and in lieu of flowers, the family has designated Hands of Hope for memorial contributions:  Hands of Hope (www.HoHAfrica.org), P.O. Box 54187, San Jose, CA  95154.

A Memorial Service will be held for Bernard as soon as current COVID-19 restrictions allow.

Jeremiah 31:3

“I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness.”