E. Michael Roll, 75, the mayor of District Heights since 1957 and a retired sales representative for Exxon, died of respiratory arrest Thursday at the Washington Adventist Hospital in Takoma Park.
Mr. Roll, who was elected to 13 consecutive two-year terms as the mayor of District Heights, was the senior municipal officer in Maryland at the time of his death. He was a former president and board member of the Maryland Municipal League and a former president of the Prince George's County Municipal League. He attended 12 conventions of the National League of Cities.
During Mr. Roll's years as mayor, District Heights built a Municipal Center. Mr. Roll is said to have regarded this as his greatest single contribution to the city.
Mr. Roll was a member of the advisory board of Prince George's Community College for 12 years. In 1963 and 1964, he was a member of the commission that drew up a new charter for Prince George's. He was a former chairman of the Prince George's County Animal Control Commission and the Prince George's County Beautification Commission and a member of both commissions at his death.
In July, the County Council honored him for his contributions over the years.
Mr. Roll was a past president of both the Prince George's Board of Trade and the Prince George's Chamber of Commerce. In 1977, he received the Board of Trade's "Man of the Year" award.
Mr. Roll was born in Nusco, Avellino, Italy. He came to the United States in 1912 and grew up in Lamberton, Pa. He moved to the Washington area in 1934 and had lived in District Heights since 1948.
Apart from being a sales representative for what is now Exxon, where he worked from 1934 until he retired in 1970, he was a member of the advisory board of the United Bank and Trust Company.
Mr. Roll was active on behalf of the American Automobile Association, the Cerebral Palsy Telephone, the Veterans of Foreign Wars "Buddy Poppy" Program and other groups.
He was a member of the St. Pius X Knights of Columbus and the Holy Name societies of Mount Calvary and Holy Rosary Catholic churches. He was a sponsor of the Casa Italiana at Holy Rosary.
His wife, Melinda, died in 1974.
Survivors include two daughters, Rita M. Colaianni of Bethesda and Donna Ruokonen of District Heights; a brother, Joseph, of Washington; two sisters, Virginia Kraus and Carmella Aluisi, both of District Heights, and five grandchildren.