Roland Maynard Lesieur of Nashua passed away on February 13, 2019 at the Community Hospice House in Merrimack NH at the age of 89, after a brief illness. He was married to Eleanor Foley Lesieur for 64 years prior to her death in 2016. They were married on June 16, 1952 at St. Christopher’s Church in Nashua. Roland was born on March 13, 1929 the son of the late Leo H. Lesieur & Jeanette Maynard Lesieur. He attended local elementary schools, graduated from Nashua High School in 1947 and from the University of New Hampshire in 1951. While attending UNH, he enrolled in the ROTC program where he served in the US Army as a 2nd Lieutenant stationed at Fort Bliss (El Paso, TX), Fort Lewis (Seattle, WA) and served time in Korea during the US conflict. Once his duties in the Army were complete, he and Ele returned to Nashua and raised their four children Steven, Mark, Cheryl and Larry in their north end home.
Once Roland returned to Nashua, he was employed by Maynard and Lesieur, Inc., a family tire business founded on June 1, 1928 by his father Leo and his grandfather Emile “Pop” Maynard. It began as a gasoline and oil change garage and expanded into repairs & tire sales. His father retired in 1970. At that time, Roland streamlined the business into a tire sales and service only enterprise which blossomed into one of New England’s largest tire retail and wholesale suppliers during his years at the helm. Roland loved the tire and automotive industry. It was his favorite hobby. He served on many boards including the Gasoline Retailers Association of NH board, The National Tire Dealers & Retreader’s Association board, and the New England Association of Independent Tire Dealers Association Board to name a few. He served as President of NEAITD, and in 2008 was co-inducted into the now New England Tire and Service Association’s inaugural Hall of Fame. He was a regular contributor to the NEAITD “Roadrunner” publication. His columns were blunt and to the point as only Roland could be on any subject under the sun. He never shied away from scolding a CEO of any international tire manufacturer, yet his input was respected by all for his candidness and integrity. He enjoyed mingling with anyone, but especially loved talking with the real workers, such as people in the trenches of hotels and casinos because he felt they always seemed to know what was really happening much more than most CEO’s. He also was a member of the Nashua American Legion Post 3.
The family business was Roland’s life with most vacations evolving around a tire conference. Rarely was he ever gone for more than 5 days, because he was most at home at work. Ele and he had the opportunity to travel the world together through many of these trips, with shopping being Ele’s primary focus while Roland’s was visiting historical sites. His two favorite places were Pearl Harbor in Oahu, and the American Cemetery in Normandy, France. During the summers, he made his home at Cobbett’s Pond in Windham. The home was originally owned by his parents, so he was able to enjoy it for over 80 years. He will forever be remembered as “Grandpa Tyre” by his 6 grandchildren who all enjoyed spending time at Cobbett’s with him – especially when he’d make his weekly trek to Granite State Potato Chips and Klemm’s Bakery. He reserved one weekend annually to take the grandkids to Canobie Lake Park and then for pizza afterwards. Roland enjoyed teasing his grandkids as it seemed they all hated to go to bed while Nana Ele was in charge. As early as 3pm on Saturdays, you’d hear Grandpa Tyre sing, “Time to get your jammies on.”
Roland continued to work part time until November 2018. He was Maynard & Lesieur, and will be missed by everyone, but especially by his children and grandchildren who had the rare opportunity to see their father/grandfather every single day at work. He enjoyed talking to customers about old-time Nashua, baseball, or any sport and loved showing them his extensive collection of Nashua NH historical postcards. He often reminisced about jumping the fence at Holman Stadium as a young boy to watch a few Nashua Dodger’s games in the 1940’s. He cheered for the New York Giants until the Patriots came into New England. And there was something about Notre Dame’s “fighting Irish” that would stop him from working on Saturday afternoons at home. The Boston Bruins vs. the Canadians would occasionally keep him up later than his 7:30pm bedtime because to him, it was one of the best rivalries around. When he was younger, he enjoyed playing tennis with his brother Mike and even dabbled in the game of golf with his friends Kenny Clark and Bob Temple, but there was nothing he enjoyed more than making a small bet on a game against a customer and winning. He’d never let them forget and would often frame his winnings for all to see.
Roland will be remembered by his family as a frugal man who prided himself in saving for a rainy day, and never wasting money on a brand-new car, much to his wife’s chagrin, yet he never hesitated to help out someone in need with his time or money.
Roland was predeceased by his wife Ele, his brother Leo R. “Mike” Lesieur, and daughter- in- law Laura Jean Lesieur. He is survived by his three sons, Steven and wife Carmen of Hudson, Mark of Londonderry, Larry of Nashua, and one daughter, Cheryl Lesieur Appelstein and her husband Charlie of Salem. He will be missed by his grandchildren Lynn Lesieur, Abbie Lesieur, Brian Lesieur and his wife Jennifer, Natalie Lesieur-Molak and her husband Nick, Erik Lesieur, Julie Appelstein, his great -granddaughter Ella and great-grandson Beau Lesieur recently born on 1/11/19. Roland is survived by his sisters Jacqueline Maynard, Madeleine Gingras, and his sister- in -law Elinor Lesieur, all of Nashua as well as many nieces and nephews.
The family would like to thank Dr. Boris Golosarsky and Roland’s favorite nurse Marsha who provided many years of wonderful medical care. Also, many thanks to the St. Joseph Hospital Rehabilitation Unit, the Courville Nursing Home staff in Nashua, and the Community Hospice House in Merrimack for the excellent care Roland received during his illness.
SERVICES: Calling hours will be held at Davis Funeral Home on Lock St in Nashua on Friday 2/22/19 from 4:00-7:00 pm. Services will be held at St. Christopher Church on Manchester Street in Nashua on Saturday 2/23/19 at 10 am. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to The Nashua Children’s Home, 125 Amherst St, Nashua 03064, Home Health and Hospice, 7 Executive Park Dr, Merrimack 03054 specifying use for the Community Hospice House, or a charity of your choice.
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