Roger Herbert Hermanson, 89, went to be with his Heavenly Father on July 16, 2022, two days before his 90th birthday. He was the son of Herbert and Doris Hermanson, and brother of Carol, growing up in Jamestown, NY. Roger never knew his father, who unexpectedly passed away in 1933, and he was raised in part by his grandparents, Gustav and Ina Carlson.
Roger is survived by his beloved wife, Dianne, who has been by his side since 1958. They made a wonderful team, with strengths that complemented each other and with a shared focus on faith and family. Roger also is survived by his daughter, Susan Hermanson, and her husband, Ritner Goff, and by his son, Dana Hermanson, and his wife, Heather Hermanson. Roger’s grandchildren are Katie Ivancevich, Amanda Ivancevich, Tim Hermanson and his husband, Michael Land, and Will Hermanson.
Roger’s remarkable life included a baseball scholarship to Michigan State University, time as a professional golfer, service in the U.S. Air Force in Greenland, a Ph.D. from Michigan State University, decades as a leading accounting textbook author and researcher, service as a Vice President of the American Accounting Association, 10 years on the faculty of the University of Maryland, and 24 years on the faculty of Georgia State University, as Ernst & Young – J. W. Holloway Memorial Professor and ultimately as Regents’ Professor of Accounting. Through his career, Roger influenced the lives of thousands of students, many of whom rose to the highest levels of the accounting profession or accounting academia. In short, Roger lived the American Dream, and his life took him places that he never imagined as a child.
Although his professional accomplishments and accolades are many, what makes Roger’s life so special is how he loved his family and others around him. He gave Dianne 63 years of happiness. They remained best friends and soulmates throughout their entire wonderful marriage. He also gave his children much of his time and attention, always making it clear that family came before career. The family enjoyed traveling together, as well as spending time throwing the football, shooting baskets, playing pool and ping pong, and going to swim meets and horse shows. Susan, Dana, and Heather all followed in Roger’s footsteps to become accounting professors, and they strive to also achieve the balance he showed between professional and personal life. He gave his grandchildren his time, wisdom, and love. Katie, Tim, and Will each have pursued accounting-related careers. Beyond his family, Roger was always quick to help others, whether students, colleagues, friends, or even strangers. He often was the person who people sought out when they needed help or advice.
After retiring, Roger and Dianne initially lived in Atlanta near Dana and his family. In his later years, Roger and Dianne moved to Nevada, then Florida, and eventually North Carolina to be near Susan and her family. Roger and Dianne played a critical role in helping to care for their special needs granddaughter, Amanda. In addition, Roger played a key role in Katie’s life. Some of her fondest memories come from swimming with Papa and the investment he made in making sure she got to school, gymnastics, swim team, and other activities while Amanda was requiring extra medical attention. The investment of love and time that both Roger and Dianne poured into Susan’s family speaks volumes about Roger’s generosity and loving heart. Ultimately, Susan’s family and Roger and Dianne settled in Burgaw, NC and established a horse farm. While not a horseman himself, Roger enjoyed the peacefulness of the farm, and loved seeing how Susan, Ritner, Katie, and Amanda all enjoyed their time with the horses.
Golf was a passion of Roger’s for 60 years, including five years as a club professional and competitor in the western New York area. He had the ability to tell you about every shot he hit in a round he played many years ago. Sometimes he would tell you about the same round more than once. By age 80, Roger’s golf game was quite limited due to a bad hip and the loss of sight in one eye. He played his final three holes of golf on a practice course in Florida. As he prepared to play, he said that he simply wanted to make one par. That’s it – one par. He did not par the first hole or the second hole, and he said to his playing partners, “Can you believe that I almost played in the U.S. Open? I can hardly hit the ball now.” On the third hole, the last hole he ever played, he hit his tee shot just left of the green. He then chipped onto the green, about 12 feet from the hole. As his par putt bounced toward the hole on the uneven green, Dana prayed that the ball would drop into the cup. It did. He parred the last hole that he ever played, much as he succeeded in all aspects of life, right to the end.
We celebrate the life of Roger Hermanson, and we will remember him for his love and his generosity. We will look forward to reuniting with him in Heaven. We thank everyone for their prayers over the last year, and we appreciate the wonderful care he received from several healthcare professionals. He was a fighter until the very end. The family will celebrate his life in a private ceremony at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, the family encourages anyone compelled to donate to pick a favorite charity and offer a donation in his honor.
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A service of Quinn-McGowen Funeral Home Burgaw Chapel.
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