Dr Rolla Seshagiri Rao, the grand patriarch of Indian botany passed away on 23rd February 2015 morning at Delhi-Noida, where he was undergoing treatment at his son’s residence. Born on 19th August 1921, he was 93 and until yesterday the oldest living/active botanist in the country. The word 'active' is very much appropriate for him as his interest in plant taxonomy remained till the last. He was a frequent attendee of the IAAT conferences and used to interact very actively with botanists, young and old alike, recounting his plant explorations. He started his career in 1942 as a Lecturer in P.R. College, Kakinada, where he taught till the year 1950. He joined the Botanical Survey of India in 1950 and served its regional offices in Shillong and Pune, and prior to his retirement (1977) officiated as Director of the department. Subsequently, he joined Andhra University and served as Head of the Botany Department (1977-81). During his entire tenure in the BSI he explored the floristically rich areas of the country, with particular interest in the Eastern Himalayas, NE region and the Eastern Ghats; his unflagging energy and spirit helped him pursue his floristic studies relentlessly. He was also a good administrator and known to be a tough task master. While working at BSI, Pune, he developed interest in the family Commelinaceae, on which he worked with his student Mr R. V. Kammathy. He retained this interest till the last. He was a hardcore field botanist/plant taxonomist of the old school. He published about 100 research papers and twelve books, including the Flora of Goa, Daman, Diu (1985) and Flora of Srikakulam (1986); his papers mostly comprised floristic accounts, covering many areas of the Eastern Ghats, Himalayas and NE region. Many novelties commemorate him: the genus Seshagiria M. Y. Ansari & Hemadri (represented by the species, S. sahyadrica) and species Ceropegia rollae Hemadri, Pimpinella rollae Billore & Hemadri, Flemingia rollae (Billore & Hemadri) An. Kumar, Gaultheria seshagiriana Subba Rao & Kumari, to name a few. He was awarded the prestigious Prof. Maheshwari Medal in 1984 and Prof Y.D. Tiagi Gold Medal in 1995. He has left behind him a school of dedicated botanists to carry forward his work. The passing away of Prof. R.S. Rao has left the botanical fraternity poorer. May his soul rest in peace.