Banks, Roger Dale

Roger Dale Banks, 64, of Bluefield, W.Va., formerly of Pulaski, Va., passed away Tuesday, November 13, 2018. He was born February 19, 1954 in Pulaski and was the son of the late Audrey Odine Banks and Bobby Owens Banks. In addition to his parents, he was proceeded in death by his brother Bobby Owens Banks Jr.

Left to cherish his memory are his love Alice Jones; daughter and son in law, Kellie and Adam Artrip; sister and brother in law, Julie and David Kiracofe; and grandchildren Olivia Artrip and Elijah Artrip. He also had eight nieces and nephews who affectionately called him their crazy Uncle Roger. Roger always loved making children laugh and smile. His granddaughter remembers him as Grabaw, who always made crazy faces and noises and tickled her.

Roger kept an infectious smile on his face; ensuring everyone he came across could see his joy for life. Roger was a graduate of Pulaski High School, Class of 72, where he was crowned king of the Spring Festival and prettiest in the boy’s beauty pageant. He was an excellent athlete, enjoying tennis and softball, and loved being part of a team. It was never about winning or losing for him, but about making sure everyone was included and had a good time.

He ended his working career after 30 years of service at Volvo as a Principle Operator, where he was one of the first employees hired. Before his retirement, he was chosen to travel to Sweden to learn how to program the company’s robots and was induced as an honorary member of the local motorcycle club while he was there. Whether it was getting an entire group of kids to sing on the school bus he drove, dressing as a clown in the parade when he was a volunteer fire fighter or making friends with the locals overseas during work trips to Sweden; there was never a dull moment when in his company.

Roger was a jack of all trades. He enjoyed going to craft and trade shows, furniture markets, and exploring abandoned buildings and sheds always keeping an eye out for the diamond in the rough, which is what some called him. He also loved to work in his wood shop where he made puzzles, boxes, and figurines for his family and friends. He loved Harley Davidson motorcycles, old cars, exploring the open road on his motorcycle, and even drove a hearse in his younger years.

Roger had a passion for all types of music, especially blues, and enjoyed going to concerts and festivals all around the US. He loved sharing these moments with the crowd and was even known to flat foot a time or two if the song was right.

Most importantly, Roger was a fierce friend to all he met and loved. He was always the first to lend a hand and a smile to anyone he knew needed one. He has never met a stranger and could engage in a conversation with anyone. He prided himself on helping others saying that “if you can’t help someone then what good are you?” He will be greatly missed by all who knew and loved him and would want all who knew him to remember that “Life is all about the simple things”.

The family will receive friends from 2:00 pm until 3:00 pm on Saturday, February 9, 2019 at the Charles Mathena Center, 2 Stafford Commons, Princeton, WV. A memorial service will begin at 3:00 pm with Pastor Eddie Roberts officiating. If you would like to send flowers, please have them delivered to the venue by Friday, February 8, 2019.