Richard D. Roberts, age 83, died on December 3, 2013 at his home.
Born in Cuyahoga Falls in 1930, the only child of Virgil and Isabel Roberts, he moved to Kent in 1941. Dick graduated from Roosevelt High School in 1948. Roberts attended Kent State University, graduating with a B.S. in Education in 1952.
In the fall of 1952, he married his high schools sweetheart, Colleen Carey, and began teaching speech and English at Springfield Twp. High School in Akron. While at Springfield, he also coached the debate team, directed the school plays and announced the home football and basketball games.
In the fall of 1956, Mr. Roberts moved to Kent Roosevelt High School where he taught for the next 27 years. While at RHS he taught classes in English, public speaking, acting and directing, play production, mass media, history of the theatre, parliamentary procedure and journalism. He also directed over 100 plays and musicals, and announced home football games from 1956 to 1971. During this time he also supervised over 50 student teachers. From 1983 to 2004 Roberts designed and built scale model sets for all RHS plays and musicals.
In 2003 he was selected for induction into the Kent Schools Hall of Fame.
In 1960 Dick received his Master of Arts degree from Kent State with a double major in speech and drama.
From 1960 to 1974 he served as manager of the Twin Lakes Association, and served as a special Deputy Sheriff.
For 8 years he was a member of the US Army Reserves where he attained the rank of Sergeant First Class and served as First Sergeant of Company B of the 783rd Ordinance Battalion of the 83rd Infantry Division.
Richard taught speech part time at KSU for three years.
In 1965 he helped start the Kent Credit Union and served 3 years on the audit committee.
In 1970 Roberts helped plan and design the new RHS auditorium, and served as Auditorium Manager from 1973 to 1995. When he retired, the Board of Education named the auditorium the "Richard Roberts Auditorium" in his honor.
He volunteered at the Portage County Clothing Center from 1996 to 2003, was a VIP blood donor, donating 56 pints, a member and past president of the Kent AFS Chapter. He also helped start and served as president of the Kent Arts Council and helped start the Kent Interfaith Council.
He was a member of the Kent United Church of Christ for over 50 years where he served on most committees and was elected moderator (President) of the congregation.
His hobbies included photography, playing golf, magic, playing pool, woodworking and model railroading.
Richard is preceded in death by his wife of 57 years, Colleen (Carey); granddaughter, Kathryn Cobbledick He is survived by his three daughters, Rebecca Roberts and Carolyn Roberts of Kent, and Lori (Thomas) Roberts-Cobbledick of Marblehead; grandchildren, Leslie (Tim) Oberholtzer, Steven Roberts, and Dylan Cobbledick; great grandson, Parker Oberholtzer.
A Celebration of Life service will be held 11:00 AM Saturday, January 11 at Kent Roosevelt High School Richard Roberts Auditorium, 1400 N. Mantua Street Kent, OH where friends, colleagues and former students may gather to share memories from 10-11 AM. In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be made to Kathryn Cobbledick Art Scholarship, c/o Marblehead Bank, 709 W. Main Street, Marblehead, OH 43440 or The Kent Roosevelt Drama Guild, c/o Kent City Schools, 321 N. DePeyster Street, Kent, OH 44240 or Best Choice Senior Meals and Catering, Family and Community Services, 705 Oakwood Street, Ravenna, Ohio 44266.
(RC 12-5 & 12-8-13)