Coworkers Remember Longtime Staff Member
by Buffy Lockette
Jacksonville State is mourning the tragic loss of longtime staff member Roger Measles, who died Sept. 15 along with his fiancée, Jessica Slater, following a motorcycle accident north of Jacksonville.
Measles, 40, worked at JSU for more than half his life. The Jacksonville native started in the Maintenance Department on yard crew after graduating from Alexandria High School. In 2003-2004, he transferred to Building Services where, in 2022, he was promoted to Housekeeping Supervisor. It was a role he thrived in.
“He really embraced it and excelled at it,” said custodian Jay Jones, who worked with Measles for five years. “He knew this department like no one else, and he took pride in it. He was a great manager.”
His supervisor, Building Services Supervisor Dennis Christopher, agreed: “He was a leader by all means. He was always willing to help people.”
Christopher shared an example of when a community member called the office and asked if anyone on campus could help her with a flat tire – he responded by getting on his motorcycle and helping her change it, free of charge. He also helped coworkers diagnose issues with their cars and make repairs.
“He was a good guy,” Christopher said. “There’s nothing bad you could say about him.”
Windy Vanover, who was hired at the same time as Measles and served alongside him as a Housekeeping Supervisor, said he was a great colleague and friend.
“I worked with Roger for 21 years,” Vanover said. “He was my best friend. We were salt and pepper, always together, working throughout campus. He always brought out the good in every situation, no matter what the situation was.”
The father of four coached youth football in Pleasant Valley. As president of a local motorcycle club, The Regulators, he organized and participated in several charity rides. He and his fiancée were, in fact, leaving such an event with fellow club members when the fatal accident occurred.
In addition to his generosity, coworkers also remember Measles for his great sense of humor and his enjoyment of practical jokes. He once placed a GI Joe action figure in the Building Services bathroom, just to see how long it would take someone to notice. Recently, when a housekeeper called him early one morning to report that the power was out in the office, he asked her if she remembered to pay the light bill.
There are countless stories of Measles jumping out from behind a door and startling a coworker – or revving his motorcycle engine when leaving for lunch to make everyone sitting outside at Strut’s across the street nearly spill their drinks.
“There will never be another Roger Measles,” said fellow Housekeeping Supervisor Brandy Williams. “And there will never be another daddy as good as he was.”
Measles leaves behind four children, ages 4 to 16: Bronson, Hunter, Cayson and Ivy. He is also survived by his parents, Jerome “Romey” Measles – who retired from the JSU Physical Plant – and Katie Measles – who retired as a longtime housekeeper of First Baptist Church of Jacksonville.
As children of a deceased employee, the Measles children will receive tuition remission to JSU should they decide to enroll in the future. Coworkers are also collecting funds to support the family’s other immediate needs. For more information on how to contribute, contact Karen Pollard in Facilities at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Following his wishes, a public funeral and memorial have not been planned.