Cover photo for Roland Swanson Bailey's Obituary
Roland Swanson Bailey Profile Photo

Roland Swanson Bailey

May 28, 1927 — May 25, 2024

Roland Swanson Bailey

Roland Swanson Bailey, age 96, of Prattville, Alabama, passed away May 25, 2024 at his home. A Private Family Service will be  Friday, May 31, 2024, with Bro. Rick Moore officiating. Entombment will be in Magnolia Chapel Mausoleum with Magnolia Chapel South directing.   

He was preceded in death by his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Brady Bailey; four sisters and four brothers.

Survivors include his wife, Sarah Nichols Bailey; daughters, Melody Colvert (Ken Colvert) and Denise Brown (Scott Brown); sister, Bobby Dean Davis; grandchildren, Kristin Carroll (Ken Carroll), Emily Crenshaw (Will Crenshaw), Bailey Nix (Justin Nix), and Griffin Brownlyn (Samantha Brownlyn); great-grandchildren, Tripp and Sarah Kate Carroll, Grey and Carrigan Crenshaw.

Swanson Bailey was one of 10 children, 5 boys and 5 girls. He was the youngest of the Bailey boys and the 5th and final son to enlist in the military during World War II at the age of 17. All served in the Navy during which time Swanson was assigned to numerous ships throughout his tenure, the last aboard the U.S.S. Iowa. One assignment of note was as part of a crew to clean up Bikini Atoll following the nuclear tests conducted there.
After the war, he returned home and married his sweetheart, Sarah Jean Nichols, marking the start of their 75-year marriage. They settled in Tuscaloosa where they raised two daughters, Melody and Denise. Swanson spent the majority of his adult years working in foodservice sales, which was a good fit for his outgoing personality and his love of food. He retired from Alabama Institutional Foods of Tuscaloosa.

Sarah and Swanson relocated from Tuscaloosa to Prattville to be closer to their daughters. There they found their church home at Fountain City Baptist Church. They also enjoyed the senior activities at Gillespie Senior Center where they made lots of friends.

Swanson loved his family whole-heartedly! He enjoyed every minute of the annual summer gathering of the Bailey siblings and their families as well as every other opportunity to get together. He also loved Alabama football, each and every season. He had a kind heart, a gentle nature, and a smile for everyone he crossed paths with throughout his day. He was a true Southern Gentleman.

Swanson passed away peacefully at home surrounded by his family.

Pallbearers will be Griffin Brownlyn, Ken Carroll, Tripp Carroll, and Justin Nix.

In lieu of flowers, please send donations to Fountain City Baptist Church, 492 East Main Street, Prattville, AL 36067

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Roland Swanson Bailey, please visit our flower store.


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