Randy Clifford Cypret

August 7, 1953January 31, 2014

Randy Cypret spent his life as a newspaperman, photographer, PR consultant, civic activist and devoted husband and father. He fought cancer for many of his 60 years, mostly in Houston, and lost his courageous battle on Jan. 31 at home with his family. The son of two public school teachers, Willard C. and Edith Cypret, he was born Aug. 7, 1953 in Oklahoma City. The family moved to Schaumburg, Illinois, where he spent most of his growing-up years, always showing an inclination for adventure. The first one probably was returning to school after a months-long bout with mononucleosis wearing a beard in violation of his high school’s no-facial-hair policy. He made his case and was allowed to keep it. His next adventure was earning a BS in Journalism from the prestigious Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University in 1975, where he was a member of Alpha Delta Phi. Randy’s newspaper career began at a Quad Cities daily and extended to a Chicago public relations firm. Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma brought him to Houston for treatment at M.D. Anderson. Randy’s strength and sheer determination, coupled with experimental treatments, allowed him to be part of the 15% who at that time beat the disease. Randy took a job with the Beaumont Enterprise and later with Houston’s Leader Newspapers. He was a news and feature writer, editor and expert photographer. Known for his sardonic, dry sense of humor and sound devotion to seeing right triumph over wrong, Randy became a Heights-area civic activist. He spent three years working to ensure demolition of a crime-ridden abandoned apartment complex in the Heights. The success of this crusade exemplified Randy’s leadership. Randy ran for Houston City Council so he could do more to improve his community; he just barely missed making the runoff in a field of many candidates. He served on the Heights Community Development Corporation, a subcommittee of the city’s Planning and Zoning Commission; the Ad Hoc Zoning Task Force, Houston Resident Citizens Participation Commission, the Houston Heights Association, the HHA’s Community Assistance Committee, the HPD Positive Interaction Program (PIP) and the Greater Heights Chamber of Commerce. Randy was a member of Leadership Houston Class XVIII. He became a high-ranking member of the PR and marketing team at the Houston Community College System and is known as the father of the HCC Academic Challenge, a televised competition between high schools in the Greater Houston area. Later Randy served as a News Media/PR man and newsletter publisher for Chevron Phillips Chemical Co., Northwest Assistance Ministries and the University of Houston-Downtown. On March 14, 1999, Randy married Maureen Spector, the love of his life. Henceforth, he devoted his spare moments to family activities that included gardening, traveling, photography, music, bird watching, baseball, hockey, cooking, camping and pets. There were lots of laughs with Maureen and Meg, the couple’s daughter and recent Tulane University graduate. Opposites proved to attract. In Maureen’s words, “He is totally a cat person who could love dogs. I’m a dog person who can love cats.” Randy loved motorcycling and rode on many trips to Arkansas and Mexico. Travels with his brother Ron took him to Europe and saw the import of a VW Beetle, while travels with Maureen and Meg saw adventures in China, Mexico and Eastern Europe and prompted the Cypret family to host HCC’s foreign exchange students. Many of these adventures are well documented by Randy’s expert photography. “He was the best dad I could ever have,” Meg says. The man who described himself as “just an old newspaper guy” is survived by Maureen and Meg; three dogs and four cats; sister Donna Cypret of Houston; brother Ron and his family of Waddell, Arizona; sister Phyllis Thorngren and her family of Silvis, Illinois; numerous nieces and nephews. Visitation will be from 5-8 p.m. on Thursday, Feb 6th. Services will be held at 3 p.m. Friday, Feb. 7th in the Grand Chapel of Brookside Funeral Home, Eastex Freeway at Lauder, with burial in Brookside Memorial Park. A celebration-of-life reception will follow. In lieu of flowers, Randy requested donations to Northwest Assistance Ministries of Houston, TX or the Southern Animal Foundation of New Orleans, LA.


  • Visitation Thursday, February 6, 2014
  • Funeral Service Friday, February 7, 2014

Randy Clifford Cypret

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Glenda Jeffcoat

February 18, 2014

Maureen, I am saddened for your loss. Both you and Meg are in my thoughts and prayers

Kelly Norton

February 13, 2014

I learned a lot from Randy as his assistant editor back in 1996 at The Leader Newspapers (where I took over as editor when he left and stayed until 2004) that I still use today in my PR career. Like him “an old newspaper guy” I am a forever self-proclaimed “print gal” in this world of social media. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers.

Margaret Graeff

February 7, 2014

I am very sorry for your loss. Please know that you and your daughter are in my thoughts and prayers. My sincerest condolences.

Bill Pogue

February 7, 2014

I came to know Randy all too little while he worked for UHD, where I serve on the faculty. In any of our contacts, however, he displayed both helpfulness and wit. Upon reading of his life, it's especially regrettable that we didn't share more memories as there were several "connection points" in our lives. I am sorry to be unable to attend today's service and reception due to prior conflicts, Please accept my condolences.

Bill Pogue

Barbara Monroe

February 7, 2014

"Maureen, please forgive me for not attending your husband's service. My thoughts and prayers are with you. I wish I could have had a better opportunity to get to know you both. My husband, Dan, thinks quite highly of you and of your recently departed Randy. Should we be able to do anything for you please let us know. Always, Daniel and Barbara Monroe."

Julie Amico

February 6, 2014

Maureen, I just learned of Randy's passing. I have had a little diversion and not been on FB for a few days. My heart goes out to you and your daughter. I'm caring for my mom (post surgery-Wednesday), but my prayers are with you. Julie Amico (Friendswood, TX)

Maggie Zamora

February 6, 2014

Maureen, I just learned of Randy's passing. My prayers are with you and your wonderful family.

Samra Bufkins

February 6, 2014

I just learned of Randy's passing. We were buddies in our Leadership Houston class. I remember his wit and his commitment to his community. He will be missed.

Pierre jean Daniel

February 6, 2014

Maureen, i did not know Randy, but to have married such a wonderful and talented lawyer such as you, he must have been a very fine man. I am sure he will continue watching after you and you will feel from time to time. I give all my respects to him.

Dana LeJune

February 6, 2014

Maureen: I've not lost a spouse, and so cannot empathize. But please know that many of (even) your acquaintances love you, and want your grief to be short-lived.