Cover photo for Mr. TP Rotello's Obituary
Mr. TP Rotello Profile Photo
1937 Mr. 2021

Mr. TP Rotello

November 28, 1937 — August 15, 2021

Thomas Pete Rotello, 83, passed away Sunday August 15, 2021 at his home with his family by his side. TP or Bubba, as most called him, was born November 28, 1937 in Bryan, Texas to Tom and Leila (Palasota) Rotello. He was baptized at St. Anthony Catholic Church in Bryan.
TP is survived by his wife Reba Lauter Rotello, son and daughter-in-law Thomas P. (Tommy) Rotello Jr. and wife Jackie Rotello. Daughter Michaele R. Greenwood. Grandchildren: Joseph Rotello, girlfriend Layla Perez and Mary Rotello. Dalton, Michael, and Jenna Greenwood. Brother Sammy Rotello, nephew Sam Rotello, niece Amy Baldobino, husband Joe and great nephew Reece. Brother-in-law and sister-in-law Donnie and Patsy Molitor, niece Stacey Becker and husband Brady, great niece Katie and great nephew Beau, niece Lesley Horne and husband Willy. Sister-in law Kay Finke, nephew Tim Finke and great nephews Nathan, Blaine, and Garret Finke. Special friends Ike and Gayle Boudreaux from Louisiana, and many more lifelong friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents, brother Francis Rotello, sister-in-law Nina Rotello and brother-in-law Kennard Finke.
TP was a 5th generation farmer and rancher of Brazos County, Texas. He resided on his farm in Brazos County with the love of his life, his devoted wife of 57 years, Reba Lauter Rotello. They were married on September 29, 1963, at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church. Farming was his life and he loved being on his tractor. He was a hard worker, he never gave up, and didn’t know the word quit. He owned and operated Delta Farm. On his farm he produced cotton, grain sorghum, soybeans, wheat, sunflowers, corn, hay and cattle. He worked with his son Tommy, who owns and operates Plantation Dirt Construction Inc., doing precision land leveling, digging lakes, detention ponds, building roads, subdivisions, golf courses, industrial and commercial site work and sport complexes for many years.
TP spent his early years working on a 1500-acre family farm and dairy operation. In the 1950’s he was the first farmer to use in-furrow fungicides and herbicides on row crops and he introduced furrow irrigation on row crops and silage for dairy and feedlot operations in Texas. He was a member of the Navasota Chapter Future Farmers of America and earned the Lone Star and American Farmer Awards. He graduated from Navasota High School in 1956. He attended Blinn College and then Texas A&M, with a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture Engineering Degree. He also served in the Texas Army National Guard, 49th Division Engineering Battalion.
In 1957 he designed, engineered and built the first air-conditioned farm machinery. Installation was done on a new 1957 two row International Harvester (IH) cotton picker. Local newspapers as well as the Chicago Tribune carried photos and write ups about this great step in agriculture. For 10 years he worked for Red Barn Fertilizer Company. From 1952 to 1964, he contracted more than 500 farm workers per year from Mexico through the Governmental Bracero Farm Labor Programs. In 1963 he became the first commercial soybean producer in Texas. He operated a feedlot and pre-conditioning operation for 12 years. Over the years he has dedicated his time to many agricultural programs. In 1968 he introduced Soy Lecithin to Pemex Oil in Mexico, to reduce pollution problems. He has served on many different boards through the years: Texas Farm Bureau Board of Directors (Brazos County) for 14 years, Texas Soybean Board Chairman for 7 years, Texas Department of Agriculture Biotech and Sustainable Agriculture Board, the United Soybean Board as Director on International Marketing Division for 19 years. He was a member of Texas Seed Board and producer of registered soybean seed and grew seed for Jacob Hartz and Bogard Seed Companies in Arkansas. He served on the Texas Sustainable Agricultural Board and the Sustainable Agricultural Board with the United Soybean Board. He served as Chairman on the Texas Soybean Board, Vice-Chairman on the Mid-South Soybean Board and Director on the United States Soybean Export Council.
He also had a passion and an ear for music in playing the piano. He was really good. Playing up into his eighties. He learned to play piano at the age of 6, his teacher at the time taught classical music. He soon surpassed what she could teach and taught himself to play by ear. He could hear a song he never heard before and go home and play it on his piano. He was asked to play the piano at the grand opening bash of the Shamrock Hotel on St Patrick’s Day back in 1949 in Houston, Texas at the age of 12. Movie stars like Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Doris Day, Dorothy Lamour and Sammy Davis Jr. were just some of the movie stars that were there. In the 1950’s and 1960’s he played piano for a lot of different bands, at weddings and dance halls across Texas. He played classical, rhythm and blues, and country music. On occasion he played for Charlie Pride and quite often for his good buddy, Willie Nelson.
In his spare time, he loved to go hunting in Colorado and fishing at Toledo Bend and spending time with family and friends.
Serving as pallbearers: Ira Lewis, Ike Boudreaux, Brady Becker, Robert Jensen, Johnnie Osborne and Mark Schonefield
Honorary pallbearers: Sam Rotello, Tommy Lyons, James Evans, Willy Horne and Frank Perez
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Mr. TP Rotello, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Wednesday, August 18, 2021

5:00 - 7:00 pm (Central time)

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Rosary

Wednesday, August 18, 2021

Starts at 7:00 pm (Central time)

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Funeral Service

Thursday, August 19, 2021

Starts at 10:00 am (Central time)

Christ Our Light Catholic Church

9677 Highway 6, Navasota, TX 77868

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