Roland was born Nov. 17, 1925, in Rayne, La., to Victor Darcé and Felide Marguerite Landry Darcé. He lived with his family near the blacksmith shop operated by his grandfather, Phillip Darcé, until moving to a dairy farm when he was 8 years old.
He attended Saint Joseph School and Rayne High School. As a young man, he learned drafting skills that he applied to construction and fabrication design.
In 1950, while supervising the construction of rice dryers in Arkansas, Roland met Jo Perkins, and they were married Jan. 26, 1951, in Jonesboro, Ark. They made their homes in Houston and south Louisiana, including the communities of Welsh, Thibodaux and Schriever, before moving to Pampa in 1961. Between 1980 and 1994, they lived in St. Louis, Mo., and then returned to Pampa in 1994.
Roland worked in the engineering division of Cabot Corp. from 1961 until his retirement in 1989.
In addition to being a devoted, loving husband and father, Roland was passionate about travel and learning. His work with Cabot took him to many foreign countries. He and Jo shared a love for excursions, and over the years the couple drove the length and breadth of the United States, often collecting artifacts for Jo’s antique furniture business but always taking the time to explore.
Roland was an avid reader and book collector with interests in a multitude of topics, as well as a self-taught craftsman. He was a skilled woodworker who helped his wife remodel and decorate each of their homes.
He taught himself how to fly fish, tie his own flies and make quality fishing rods for himself and family members. He modified military rifles for sporting use, reshaping the stocks and barrels by hand.
He was a highly skilled amateur photographer and a lifelong student of photographic arts and technology.
During the past ten years, Roland became an accomplished cook, learning to make the delicious food of south Louisiana that his wife used to prepare, as well as new recipes. He often shared his culinary accomplishments with his friends.
Roland was an ardent letter writer and conversationalist who continued to share his knowledge and philosophy on life with friends and family right up to his death.
He died in Hospice Austin’s Christopher House. In addition to his parents, Roland was preceded in death by his wife of 49 years, Josephine Perkins ‘Jo’ Darcé, sons Steve Williams and David Darcé, brother Victor Darcé, Jr. and sister-in-law Gladys Menard Darcé.
He is survived by his daughter, Linda Williams Harder, and son-in-law, Dan Harder of Stillwater, Minn.; son, Phillip ‘Flip’ Darcé, and daughter-in-law, Sharee Rumsey Darcé, of Austin; son, Chad Darcé, and daughter-in-law, Carla Darcé, of Austin; grandchildren Brett Anne Williams, Lisa Williams, Caitlin Darcé, Will Darcé, Benjamin Darcé and Renee Darcé Gray; and great-grandson Kelton Gray. He is also survived by his brother, Richard Darcé, and sister-in-law, Audrey Mier Darcé, of Jennings, La., and numerous nephews, nieces and cousins.
The family requests memorial contributions, in lieu of flowers, to Hospice Austin, 4107 Spicewood Springs Road, Suite 100, Austin, TX, 78759.
A graveside memorial service will take place at 2 p.m., on Saturday, Sept. 25, in Pampa, under the direction of the Carmichael-Whatley Funeral Directors. More information is available online at www.carmichael-whatley.com.