Otis A. Rogers Jr., a lifelong resident of Oak Bluffs, died peacefully on Jan. 26, just shy of his 93rd birthday.

Born in Oak Bluffs on Jan. 30, 1923, a son of Otis A. and Mary (Veira) Rogers Sr., Otis was a proud man of simple means who cared deeply for his children, grandchildren, his extended family and this Island that was his only home.

He was constantly on the move, transportation being at the heart of all he enjoyed. As a young boy he would pull his wagon and collect pine needles for the family’s animals, and then travel around the highlands to sell his father’s fresh vegetables and flowers. Through those interactions with the families in that area he would be offered a job as a seasonal chauffeur. During this time, Otis had many jobs which helped him purchase the various Model As that he and his friends would put together and enjoy on the road.

In 1945 he met the love of his life, Mary Kidder Rogers. In 1947 they married and she would spend the next 69 years riding at his side.

Soon after his marriage, Otis and his brother Everett started their business, Rogers Freight Trucking. Otis was again behind the wheel, hauling rocks for jetties, grain to the farms, alcohol to the package stores and many unusual household furnishing moves that would have him driving on and off the Island. The winter months meant sanding and plowing the roads.

Otis called himself a backyard mechanic, but had great knowledge of engines and enjoyed the mechanics that went along with a vehicle. This skill led him to Old Colony Motors in Edgartown where he became a parts specialist. But missing the action of being behind the wheel, Otis decided to start his own business, Rogers Taxi Service. This gave him an outlet to pass his knowledge of the Island on to his patrons. To make ends meet during the off-season he drove a school bus for 22 years for Island Transportation. His passion for driving carried over to the many students he taught to drive at Mr. Adams’s driver education course. Of course he would be the instructor for his three grandchildren; grandpa would never say no.

For 40-plus years he served his community as a proud Oak Bluffs volunteer fireman serving in positions from fireman to captain. He also served on the Oak Bluffs finance board. For many summers he could be seen at the Oak Bluffs harbor attending to the surrounding grounds in the very early morning before starting his driving day. He sold the taxi business and retired in 1999. By then he had passed his love of all things moving onto his son Russell, whose excavation business would once again provide another outlet for Otis to get behind the wheel.

He loved everything about his Island home, but nothing more than a freshly caught quahaug, clam or anything seafood. When his children and grandchildren would talk about adventure away from the Island, he would brush it off and say what do you want to do that for, you live in God’s country.

Otis was a religious man of the Catholic faith who could be seen many a Sunday as an usher at Our Lady Star of the Sea in Oak Bluffs.

He was predeceased by his wife Mary this past November, his brother Everett Rogers, and sisters Genevieve Eddy and Shirley Law. He is survived by his son Russell Rogers and his daughter Nancy Giordano and her husband, Richard; grandchildren Daniel A. Rogers and his wife Kimberly, Leanne (Giordano) Bartkowski and her husband Jeffrey, and his grandson Michael (who happened to be born on his grandfather’s birthday); and his loving sister Lorraine Mavro and her husband Richard, along with many nieces and nephews.

A funeral mass will be held Thursday, Jan. 28 at 11 a.m. at St. Augustine’s Church in Vineyard Haven. Interment will follow at the Oak Grove Cemetery in Oak Bluffs.

Arrangements are under the care of the Chapman, Cole and Gleason Funeral Home in Oak Bluffs. An online guestbook is available at ccgfuneralhome.com.

Donations in Otis’s memory can be made to Good Shepherd Parish, P.O. Box 1058, Vineyard Haven, MA 02568, or the Oak Bluffs Firefighter’s Association, P.O. Box 2131, Oak Bluffs, MA 02557.