Kevin “Kev” Rogers’ story began on September 29, 1978. Kevin was born in the city that never sleeps; otherwise known as New York City, to Willie Beatrice Starkie and Johnny Rogers. The younger of two children, Kevin spent his childhood alongside his older brother, Jeffrey Rogers, on the basketball courts of Brownsville, Brooklyn making many lifelong friends along his journey. Kevin graduated from Nazareth High School and attended Medgar Evers College and Long Island University. He completed his studies at Western Carolina University, earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Early Childhood Education, with a concentration in Special Education. His love for working with children led him to securing a position in New York City’s Department of Education, where he worked as a Paraprofessional, basketball coach, and mentor. However, Kevin didn’t let the title define his commitment, so he could often be found doing whatever was needed and filling any role to help serve the students in Brownsville, and the overall community. Most recently, Kevin served as the Founder and Executive Director of Upper Room Kids Academy & Upper Room Outreach International in Concord, NC.
Kev never met a person that was not impressed by his charisma and witty personality, that included a young vibrant teacher named Lasharee Lynn. Obviously, their relationship grew beyond that of mere colleagues, and blossomed into a young power couple who shared an unconditional and committed love. Of all the people he touched, his proudest achievement in life was marrying his wife Lasharee Rogers who supported him from courtship to their last days together. If Lasharee was Kev’s proudest achievement, then their amazing children Garfield, Kevin Jr. and Mya were his living legacies. They were the core of his heart, soul and existence. When someone calls their father the best dad ever, what they’re saying is: “It is my considered opinion that my dad is the greatest example of fatherhood that can be found in the entire history of humankind.” Kevin will be remembered as the “Best Dad Ever.” He was the Dad who drove the car across states while everyone slept. He was the Dad who the kids cried for in the middle of the night when they could not sleep. He was the Dad who toted the kids to all their basketball games on weekdays and weekends and mentored other kids along the way. He was the Dad who loved all his children equally and impartially. He was quite simply, “The Best Dad Ever.”
In his early adult years, Kevin became known as one of the coolest, most laid-back people that you would every meet. When Kev was in your presence, a good time and plenty of laughs were guaranteed. Kevin was known for wearing the iconic New York Fashion which was a white T-shirt and Yankee fitted, regardless of the weather. He loved his family, his extended family at the schools he worked at in New York and his favorite sport, basketball. When Kevin moved to North Carolina over a decade ago, the relocation did not diminish the magnitude of love he had for working with children. He and Lasharee founded Upper Room Kids Child Development Center in 2006, which has since grown into Upper Room Kids Academy. As founder and Executive Director, this became Kev’s second home, and his second family. Kev also had a passion for outreach, community development, and community empowerment. He and Lasharee worked together in Kenya in 2013 and 2017 to provide water to a small community, playground equipment to neighboring villages, and living supplies to children in orphanages. For the last several years, they provided backpacks with supplies to children in their local community, fed the homeless, and provided clothing and basic items for those in need. As their passion for this work grew, they created Upper Room Outreach Center. Kev worked tirelessly to renovate the Outreach Center space that is currently being utilized. This has helped to expand their reach and fulfill their vision of supporting children and families in their community with educational programs that will lead to endless opportunities.
Kevin kept those he loved close and was a man of great faith. When diagnosed with hypertension, no one would ever imagine that someone as young as Kevin would be chosen to brave the battle! However, he put his faith in God, committed himself to his family and continued his philanthropic work of saving and changing the lives of children and families locally and internationally. He was a rare combination of someone who had a love of life and a firm understanding of what was important – the simplicity of living a life with those you love. We can surely understand why God would choose Kevin to come home: his heart, so big, so pure, so filled with goodness! Surrounded by his loving family, Kevin peacefully departed this earthly life on Thursday, March 14, 2019 and is now living His Best Life in Glory! Kevin’s legacy will live through his wife Lasharee Rogers; his three children Garfield Donald, Kevin Rogers Jr. and Mya Rogers; two grandchildren Jace Donald and Osiris Donald; his father, Johnny Rogers; his nieces, Victoria Rogers, Madeleine Rogers, Gianna Lynn, and Nina Lynn; nephew Jeffrey Rogers Jr., Skylar Rogers, and Cash Lynn; his brother-in-law Kareem Lynn; grandmothers, Mary Starkie and Ruth Mayfield; grandfather, Melvin Mayfield; and a host of aunts, uncles, cousins, and other loved ones. He is preceded in death by his mother, Beatrice Starkie; brother, Jeffery Rogers; grandparents, Bennie Stark, Leanna and Claiborne Rogers, and Louise and Ezel Lynn
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