George Luther Roach – Obituary

by Lynn McMillen
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George Luther Roach, 85, died peacefully on Tuesday following an extended illness. He and his wife have been Florence residents since 1959. George served in the U.S.Army and was deployed in Korea with the 151st Combat Engineer Battalion during 1951-52. He began his career in the Huntsville area at the Russell Erskine Hotel, where he worked his way up from a valet position in the garage to Catering Manager, achieving what one publication called “his enviable reputation for serving excellent food in a gracious manner.” He relocated to Florence and spent many years as Manager of the Florence Country Club and later owner of Lakeview Restaurant and Motel. George hosted and catered many high-profile events and became noted for his signature ice sculptures.

George Luther Roach was born in Fackler, Ala., in 1927, to George and Lucille Canterbury Roach. He met his devoted wife of 65 years, Pauline (Polly) Sudduth, while in high school. The two were married in May 1948. George was a musician, playing drums in orchestras and dance bands for many years. He mastered a number of instruments with little or no training and passed this love of music on to his children. He was a diehard University of Alabama football fan and never missed hearing or attending a game.

In addition to his wife, George is survived by daughters, Polly Roach Hyatt, of Atlanta, Mary Beth Roach McDade, of Memphis, and Lila Roach Stapler, of Sheffield; and son, James W. “Pete” Roach, of Seoul, South Korea. He was especially devoted to his five grandchildren, Ben Hyatt, Zada Hyatt, Aaron Stapler, Hannah Roach and Abigail Roach.

Visitation will be from 1-2 p.m. Saturday, June 15, with the funeral service following at 2 p.m. at Greenview Memorial Chapel in Florence.

As an option to flowers, the family suggests memorials to the Tuberous Sclerosis Alliance in memory of George and in honor of his grandson, Ben Hyatt, tsalliance.org, or to one of the charities of the Veterans of Foreign Wars www.vfw.org.

Arrangements by Greenview Funeral Home, greenviewmemorial.com.

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