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 Roland B. Desi Desilets

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Roland B. "Desi" Desilets

  • Birth 21 Feb 1931
  • Death 5 Apr 2010
  • Burial Yeadon, Delaware County, Pennsylvania, USA
  • Memorial ID 50807259

Daily Local News, West Chester, Chester County, Pa
Roland B. Desilets of Malvern
Thursday, April 8, 2010

Roland B. Desilets, 79, known as "Desi" to friends and "Papa" by his eight grandchildren, passed peacefully at his home on Monday, April 5, 2010, surrounded by his devoted wife, Frances, and their four children.

Born in Lynn, Mass., on Feb. 21, 1931, he was the son of the late Rodolphe and Blanche Desilets. He has two surviving brothers, Rodolphe (wife, Joanne) and Armand; and a late sister, Jacqueline.

Desi was a graduate of St. Mary's High School in Lynn, Mass., class of 1949.

He then served as a corporal in the U.S. Marine Corps during the Korean Conflict from 1950 to 1953.

Upon returning to Lynn, Desi entered Boston College to pursue a bachelor's degree in mathematics, graduating cum laude in 1958.

He accepted a position as a mathematician with Burroughs Corp. and moved to Malvern, where he lived the remainder of his life.

He completed his formal education at Villanova University, earning a master's degree in mathematics in 1960.

Desi met the love of his life, Frances V. McAleer, in 1959. They were married on Oct. 15, 1960, and were celebrating 50 years of marriage this year. During that time they were almost inseparable, sharing their joys and sorrows, overwhelmingly joys, which included raising their four children, Roland Jr., Barbara Ann, Thomas and Michele.

Desi was at the forefront of the emerging software development field and spent decades contributing to the research and development of large computer systems' hardware and software. Among his accomplishments were participating in developing the navigation system for the NASA Gemini Space Exploration Program and working on early versions of Burroughs mainframe computer operating systems. Over time, he rose through the management ranks, retiring from Unisys Corp. in 1991 as director of Systems Software Development.

Desi was an active member of St. Patrick's Parish in Malvern since 1964, serving as an usher and later as a Eucharistic minister.

Desi is survived by his loving wife, Frances Desilets; and their four children: son, Roland; daughter, Barbara Ann Lawrie and her husband, Bill; son, Thomas and his wife, Amy; and daughter Michele Reel and her husband, David.

He was predeceased by his faithful dog Sparky in 1992.

A funeral Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10 a.m. on Saturday, April 10, at St. Patrick's Church in Malvern.

Interment will follow in Holy Cross Cemetery in Lansdowne.

Friends and relatives are also invited to attend a viewing from 6 to 8 p.m. on Friday, April 9, at Alleva Funeral Home Inc., 1724 E. Lancaster Ave., Paoli, 610-644-3540,

There will not be a viewing on Saturday morning.

Memorial contributions may be made to St. Patrick's Parish, 126 Woodland Ave., Malvern, PA 19355.





  • Created by: Dan Oh
  • Added: 8 Apr 2010
  • Find A Grave Memorial 50807259
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Roland B. "Desi" Desilets (21 Feb 1931–5 Apr 2010), Find A Grave Memorial no. 50807259, citing Holy Cross Cemetery, Yeadon, Delaware County, Pennsylvania, USA ; Maintained by Dan Oh (contributor 46803017) .