Roland was born on 3rd August 1888, in Mussoorie, India, (his father worked for the Bengal Civil Service, and collected several volumes of Indian folk tales, which have been published over the years.)
After studying at Emmanuel College, Cambridge, he worked for the Dept of Health, (he was a home civil servant from 1912.)
He served in the Royal Navy Division, and was wounded at Gallipoli in 1915.
He married Edith Helm (1890-1974) in 1919, and they had three sons, John Elliott Crooke (1920-1987) the father of Roland and Celia, Hugh Roland Crooke (1924-2015,) and Patrick (Pat) William Crooke (1927-2018.) They also had twin daughters, Alicia and Elizabeth, who both died the day after they were born in 1922.
Roland died of meningitis, and apparently, a few years later, with medical advances, would have been likely to have survived.