March 17, 2011
– Florida A&M University (FAMU) mourns the death of Lt. Col. (Ret.) Robert L. Rollins, who passed on March 14, 2011. Rollins served as a special assistant to Benjamin L. Perry, the sixth President of FAMU, and served the university as an associate vice president for the Office of Academic Affairs and assistant to the Provost.
“We are saddened by this loss of our friend and colleague,” said FAMU President James H. Ammons. “It was an honor to work with a man of such great integrity and character. Our hearts and prayers go out to the Rollins family.”
A wake is scheduled for today, March 17 from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. at New Bridge Hope Missionary Baptist Church located at 1282 Spring Creek Highway in Crawfordville, Fla. A memorial service is scheduled for March 18 at 11 a.m. at Bethel AME Church located at 501 West Orange Avenue, Tallahassee.
Rollins graduated from Industrial High School in West Palm Beach, Fla. in 1948 and entered Florida A&M College. He earned the nickname "Trapper" under the legendary Coach Jake Gaither.
In 1952, Rollins became a distinguished military graduate of FAMU. He served more than 20 years in the United States Army and was a combat veteran of the Korean Conflict and Vietnam War.
Highly decorated, he was the recipient of a host of meritorious medals, including the Bronze Star, for more than 25 aerial flights during the height of the Vietnam War. He also served tours in Kaiserslautern and Heidelberg, Germany, and several domestic posts.
He was a co-founder of the FAMU Sports Hall of Fame Induction Ceremonies. He provided service to the committee for more than 25 years and was inducted into the Hall of Fame himself in 1986. He was also added to the College of Education’s “Gallery of Distinction” in 1993.
Rollins was a member of the FAMU National Alumni Association, Alpha Kappu Mu, the FAMU Varsity “F” Club, the Retired Officers’ Association, the Tallahassee Urban League and was a lifetime member of the NAACP.
Among the first recipients of the "Sportsmanship" awards presented by the Tallahassee Quarterback Club, he was selected by the coaches of the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SIAC) for the 1951 All-SIAC team and received the J.B. Bragg Memorial Trophy as the Outstanding Senior Player.
He leaves to cherish his memory a wife of 59 years, Verita, and children Lt. Norman Rollins, patrol commander for the FAMU Police Department, Lydia, Barbara and Wendell.
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