Roland Carl Janson

September 06, 1929 – February 22, 2023

Roland Carl Janson was born on September 6, 1929 to Karl Erik Jansson and Svea Linnea Tornblom in Stockholm, Sweden. He spent his childhood in Stockholm with his parents, sister, and many cousins. Roland lived a very long, happy, and productive life. He passed peacefully at the age of 93 in Sonoma, California. Roland will be remembered as clever, creative, hardworking, and kind.

Following the early death of his mother Svea at age 34, Roland joined the Merchant Marines at age 16. He served on the MS Gripsholm and SS Joliet Victory first as a pantry boy and later a motorman in the engine room, where he completed many transatlantic trips from Goteburg, Sweden to New York, USA. In 1952, Roland enlisted in the US Army and served in the Korean War. After his honorable discharge in 1954, Roland completed his US Naturalization application and after four years, he became a US Citizen on Sept. 17, 1959, at the age of 30.

Residing in San Francisco, he attended the Swedish Seaman’s Church and was one of the earliest members of the Young Scandinavians Club, founded in 1960. One evening, at one of the many social events, a petite Swedish woman named Gun asked Roland to dance. It was then their lifelong romance began and on New Years Eve in 1959, Roland proposed to Gun (Gwen). On April 2, 1960, they were married and spent many weekends ballroom dancing together. In 1961 they welcomed their first son Kenneth and later moved to Corte Madera where they would welcome a second son, Lennard. Roland worked for Fairchild Semiconductor, which lead him to a career as a Tool & Die Machinist. Summers were spent in Truckee, where he taught his sons the skill of construction, building a family cabin on Donner Lake. In 1978, Roland moved the family to Sonoma where Roland expanded his business and became known for his ability to design, engineer, and build machine prototypes for the semiconductor industry. Roland adjusted to the country life in Sonoma, tending his property with a Farmall Tractor, leaving plenty of time for tractor rides with the grandchildren. With Gwen as a travel agent, they became frequent world travelers, visiting nearly 50 countries together. After Sonoma they moved to a home in Oakmont. It was the perfect place to retire, surrounded by a lovely garden and views of Annadel State Park. Gwen made many friends, swam in the local pool, and exercised regularly. Roland loved his garden and was happy to barbecue often for their many friends. When Gwen passed away in 2014, Roland stayed in Oakmont alone until the upkeep became too much for him to maintain. In 2018, Roland moved into a private space in Sonoma with his son Kenneth and wife Christine. Back in Sonoma, he enjoyed Sunday dinners with family. Roland was cherished by Christine’s family, enjoying many family gatherings together.

Roland is predeceased by his beloved wife Gwen Janson, eldest son Kenneth Janson (Christine) of Sonoma and sister Gun Losciale of Stockholm, Sweden. Survived by his son Lennard Janson (Kris) of Roy, Utah, and grandchildren Alex Janson, Keilee Berry, and 6 great grandchildren. He is also survived by grandchildren Cameron Janson and Kiana Janson by his eldest son Kenneth (Christine). Roland also has extended family in Sweden, nephews Roberto Losciale (Marie), Michael Losciale (Lisalot) and John Losciale. The family is forever grateful to Donna Hays for the care, support, and joy she brought to Roland as his caregiver and friend in the last 4 years. Our dear Roland is to be inurned beside his wife at Santa Rosa Veterans Memorial Park, where a private family graveside memorial is scheduled.

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