Dr. Rouel C. Belleza-consummate traveler, avid cyclist, double black belt, lifelong educator and community builder-passed away peacefully on Saturday, November 30, 2019. He was in his home, surrounded by his family, and wearing an In-N-Out t-shirt as an ode to his California roots.
Known as "Ironman Belleza" throughout his two-year battle with gastric cancer, he dazzled nurses with his brilliant smile and never once wavered in his mission to advocate for students. He made jokes in the halls of the Cherokee County School District, where he was the original architect of the Social and Emotional Learning work for our District. He continued to make us laugh through chemo, through multiple surgeries, through the loss of his gorgeous head of hair.
Rouel was born in Manila, Philippines on Christmas Eve in 1970. Despite the country's dictatorship and a proclamation of martial law, he immigrated to United States when he was just three-years-old. After graduating high school in Southern California, during which he donned an excellent flattop and acid-wash jeans (it was the 80s), he went on to receive his Bachelors Degree at Cal Poly Pomona, where he once worked security at No Doubt concert. He received his Master in Education from Boston University and rounded out an impressive academic career to earn his Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership in 2012.
He found his calling as a school counselor working with students during his time in Boston. From there he traveled on to New York and worked for Summer Discovery, recruiting and educating students from around the world. All the while, he would go on to spend 22 summers in Cambridge, England, where he directed a summer program that oversaw thousands of students over his decades-long tenure. But it was Woodstock, GA that he would make his home; he worked for the Cherokee County School District for the past 14 years with his most recent role being Supervisor of Student Service.
He was preceded in death by his mother, Esmelinda Belleza.
He leaves behind his wife of 20 years, Daniella (Ellie); two sons, Mason and Logan; father Rodolfo, sisters and brothers-in-law, Erica and Juan, Rhoda and Kyle, along with nieces and nephew, Jasmine, Julian and Eliza.
Visitation will be at Poole Funeral Home, from 6:00pm-9:00pm on Thursday, December 5, 2019, to reminisce, grieve and support each other. A Celebration of Life will be held at 3:30pm on Friday, December 6, 2019 at First Baptist Church of Woodstock.
To make a contribution you can 1) visit a Wells Fargo branch and provide them the account number 7450184977 or 2) use Zelle through the app or your financial institutions online banking. Once in Zelle use the account number 7450184077 and routing number 061000227. In both instances the savings account is under Daniella Belleza FBO Mason and Logan Belleza
DEC 5. 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM (EST)
Poole Funeral Home & Cremation Services
1970 Eagle Drive
Woodstock, GA 30189
Celebration of Life
DEC 6. 3:30 PM (EST)
First Baptist Church Woodstock
Woodstock, GA 30188
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Rouel Cornejo Belleza, please visit our floral store.