After a long and difficult struggle with a rare blood disease, amyloidosis, Randolph Val Fox, on Saturday, Jan. 25, 2014, passed away quietly with his loving wife, Elise, by his side.
Randy, as he was known by his family and friends, was born in New Orleans, La., Sept. 23, 1931, where his love of sailing and the water began on Lake Pontchartrain. He attended Fortier High School as a National Honor Student, then went on to Duke University on an ROTC scholarship.
Upon graduation from Duke, he entered the Navy as an ensign during the Korean War. His naval career took him to the Pacific Islands, where he participated in a highly classified project, “Operation Castle,” where he monitored the radiation and fallout of atomic and hydrogen bomb testings.
Another historical moment in his career occurred while his ship was stationed off Cuban waters and the crew photographed Russian ships steaming into Cuban harbors carrying Russian missiles.
Torn between love of family and his love of the Navy, family won out, and he was honorably discharged May 23, 1956. His unit was recalled and he was again honorably discharged Aug.1, 1962.
Randy entered his family’s paper business and lived and worked in San Diego, Calif., Houston, Texas, and Annapolis, Md., where he pursued his love of sailing on Chesapeake Bay. He belonged to the Houston Yacht Club, Annapolis Yacht Club and Venice, Fla., Yacht Club.
He retired in 1994 as an executive with Georgia-Pacific Paper Company and spent his retirement traveling between homes in Florida, Annapolis, Md., and Ocean City, Md. He was an avid sailor, reader and fisherman and a huge college football fan.
Randy will be greatly missed by his wife, Elise; his three children, Randolph E. Fox, of Madison, Wis., Mrs. Leslie B. Fox, of Spartanburg, S.C., and Mrs. Louise Fox Viadero of Ashburn, Va.; and his two stepsons, David B. Nelson of Fort Myers, Fla., and Mark A. Nelson of Davidsonville, Md. In addition, he leaves behind 12 grandchildren and one great-grandson.
His last 20 years of retirement were wonderful years with great friends and family and went by much too quickly. We will miss his Island Packet sailing the Chesapeake Bay, and in the evening when the sun goes down, we will think of him “slipping the bounds of earth and becoming a new star in our universe.”
Services: A Memorial Service will be held Saturday, March 1, at St. Martin’s Lutheran Church, 1120 Spa Road, Annapolis, Md., at 11 a.m., with a reception immediately following at the Annapolis Yacht Club.
Contributions: In lieu of flowers, the family would greatly appreciate a memorial donation to the American Heart Association, 800-242-8721.