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Spartan loses Rolly Olney

Sunday, 03 January 2010 21:55 Patrick McNamara
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rolly-olneyRolland D. Olney, director of the Mason Department of Public Works, died suddenly Dec. 10 at the age of 58.
Rolly was a great public works director in Mason," City Administrator Marty Colburn said. "He brought great experience to the city through his skills and was very knowledgeable in his profession. He worked at providing great service to our community as well as the city of Leslie. He will be deeply missed.
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"Our thoughts and prayers go to his family, and those who worked with him and knew him."

Services for Olney were to take place at the Leslie High School gymnasium, on Dec. 15 with Pastor Toby Teague officiating.

Interment followed at Woodlawn Cemetery.

Arrangements were handled by J.C. Adams Funeral Home, Leslie Chapel.

Olney began working for the city of Leslie in 1975, and in November 1989 was named director of its Department of Public Works. In October 2000 he also became city manager, retiring in 2007 to take the Mason DPW post.

Former Leslie City Clerk Dotte Weideman knew Olney for 34 years, saying he always gave himself at school events.

"I watched Rolly grow significantly as a person," Weideman said, "and I watched Leslie grow with him."

Olney was on the executive board for the National Rural Water Association, national director for the Michigan Rural Water Association, and also belonged to Kiwanis, Lions, Masonic Lodge of Mason, Leslie American Legion Post 491 and the Leslie First Baptist Church.

Olney served in the U.S. Marine Corps. He coached baseball, football and wrestling in Leslie, and still announced boys' basketball games.

Olney was involved with stock car racing for many years at Spartan Speedway.

Surviving are his children, Rolland Olney II, Melissa (Tony) Greaves, Travis Olney, Corey (Mandy) Davis, Allison (Randy) Squires, Adam (Jeni Dietch) Olney, and Courtney Olney; nine grandchildren, Darion, Samantha, Robert, Xavier, Sareenah, Grace, Rolly III, Dominik and Ayden; six siblings, Ronda, Linda, Jack, Louie, Doris, and John; several nieces and nephews; and a close friend, Patti Cox. He was preceded in death by his wife, Pam, and parents, Jack and Nellie Lohrke.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Rolly D. Olney Scholarship Fund, c/o Independent Bank, 144 S. Main St., P.O. Box 536, Leslie, MI 49251.

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