Longtime error coin dealer Len Roosmalen, age 84, died May 7, in Sun
Mr. Roosmalen and his late wife, Shirlee, owned and operated several
businesses in the Madison, Wis., area, including Len’s Coins & Stamps.
In 2004 Mr. Roosmalen sold his business to Jim Essence, who now runs
Jim’s C&S in Madison.
Also in 2004, Mr. Roosmalen became the fifth person ever inducted
into the Hall of Fame of the Combined Organizations of Numismatic
Error Collectors of America. He was a board member of CONECA and twice
recipient of the group’s annual Lyndon King Award for greatest
achievement for the club.
Served with Green Berets
Mr. Roosmalen served 20 years in the Army Reserve Green Beret
Special Forces, retiring at the rank of major.
He is survived by two daughters and a son, five grandchildren and
five great-grandchildren, and a brother. He was preceded in death by
A funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. on May 12 at Good Shepherd
Episcopal Church in Sun Prairie. Visitation will be held at the church
from 9 a.m. until the time of service.
The Roosmalen family suggests that in lieu of flowers, donations be
made to the Good Shepherd Episcopal Church, 3416 Swansee Ridge, Sun
Prairie, WI 53590-9495.
Lighterman, Weinberg recollect
Mark Lighterman, president of CONECA, said Mr. Roosmalen “was one of
the pioneers of the error and variety hobby. Besides being a CONECA
board member, Len also served as the Errorama Show Chairman and as
Lighterman said Mr. Roosmalen produced an error-only coin auction
six times a year when he owned his own coin shop.
“Len was a mainstay of every Errorama I attended when Errorama was a
stand-alone show. The last time I saw Len was at the ANA [convention]
in Chicago three years ago. We talked for a while in between my busy
schedule and I was glad to see a friend after so many years,”
Fred Weinberg, longtime error and variety coin dealer, said, “Len
was one of the earlier error coin dealers who carried a great
inventory of errors, ran one of the best mail-bidding businesses for
mint error coins and currency, and for decades was one of the few
dealers that collectors could rely on for information on these
wonderful mint emissions.”
Weinberg said he cannot exactly remember he first met Mr. Roosmalen,
but “I know that it’s been at least 40 years that I’ve enjoyed his
open, friendly personality, and his deep, resonate voice will always
be remembered. My condolences to his family, he’ll be greatly missed
in our special segment of numismatics.”
DeLorey and Fivaz pay honors
Tom DeLorey, longtime researcher of error and variety coins, said he
was introduced to Mr. Roosmalen “back in the 1970’s by his fellow
Wisconsinite, Ed Fleischmann, who was my mentor at [Coin
World’s] Collectors Clearinghouse.”
DeLorey remembers that he and Mr. Roosmalen “chatted at many a coin
convention, and Len was always available to bounce ideas off of
concerning errors and how they happened. Though not one of the biggest
dealers on the circuit, he was one of the nicest guys in the hobby.”
Longtime error and variety specialist Bill Fivaz said Mr. Roosmalen
was “truly one of the good guys.”
“Len had a very quiet presence, but a wealth of knowledge which he
always shared with anyone he met,” Fivaz said.
“The error world is much less vibrant with Len’s passing, and my
condolences go out to his family.”