Gokaraju Vijay Kumar
With great sadness, we announce the passing of devoted father, husband and son Gokaraju Kumar.
Mr. Kumar was born on December 29, 1952 in Madras (presently Chennai), in the state of Tamil Nadu, India. Living with his grandparents through his teenage years, he enrolled at Madras Christian College for his high school studies and then went on to Pachaiyappa's College, completing his Bachelor of Science in Physics with special distinction and winning the school's Physics Gold Medal. It was here that he met lifelong friend Vijay Kumar, who would be instrumental in encouraging him to come to the USA.
After his first degree, Gokaraju enrolled at the Madras Institute of Technology, where he received a Bachelor's Degree in Electronics and Telecommunications Engineering. He then worked as a Technical Loan Officer in Andhra Bank while simultaneously applying to programs for study in America. His first stop in America was at Oklahoma State University in Stillwater, where he reconnected with his friend Vijay. He was briefly enrolled in the school's MBA program before transferring to Louisiana State University (LSU) at Baton Rouge, where he would complete his Master of Science in Finance.
After his matriculation from LSU, Mr. Kumar traveled to Boston, Massachusetts where he met the Nunna family under the stewardship of Ram Nunna. It was through these encounters that he met the woman who would become his wife - Suhasini Nunna, the youngest of the six Nunna siblings. They married in November of 1985. With Suhasini's support, he completed his Master of Science in Management Information Systems at Boston University in 1987.
While briefly employed as a LAN Administrator at a Boston law firm, he continued his job search, which would eventually lead him to Plano, Texas, where he worked for Electronic Data Systems (EDS) and then Fujitsu. During this time he and Suhasini welcomed their two sons - Adarsh in 1990 and Aneesh in 1995.
From January of 1999 to October of 2000, Mr. Kumar relocated his family to Saudi Arabia, where he worked for Saudi Aramco. The brief period saw the family flourish, experiencing many journeys in Egypt, Turkey, Dubai and Bahrain.
Upon returning to Plano, Gokaraju would continue to travel for his career, returning to Saudi Arabia once more on his own. In the summer of 2002, his wife was diagnosed with a rare cancer of the heart. Returning to the USA and relocating to Houston, Texas for her treatment, Mr. Kumar, the extended family and Indian community in Plano supported Suhasini until her death in March of 2003.
After Suhasini's death, Gokaraju settled in Houston, Texas, where he worked at Royal Dutch Shell for the remainder of his career. He married Jyoti Rao in 2004 and shared his love and compassion with her and her 2 daughters, Bhavna and Priyanka. The family had many journeys across the USA and abroad in London, Paris, Greece, Thailand and Cambodia, among others until his retirement in 2018.
Gokaraju was a man of exceptional capability and voracious intellectual appetite. He had great passions for reading, movies, food and travel, and was capable of writing and conversing in Telugu, Tamil, Hindi and French. He was loyal and kind-hearted to all, a familiar face to many, and a man of great integrity to those who knew him. The Plano and Houston communities, Nunna and Rao families, family in India and countless others mourn his departure from this earth.
Gokaraju is survived by his wife Jyoti, sons Adarsh and Aneesh, daughters Bhavna and Priyanka, sisters Vijayalakshmi and Udaya, brother Hemanth, and mother Leela Rao.