April 23, 1949 – April 18, 2018
Randall “Randy” Douglas WOODBURY passed away serenely from cancer April 18, 2018 in his home in Sebastopol, CA with close family in his home. Born April 23, 1949 in Coconut Grove, FL; lived in Puerto Rico, Florida, California. He was an Electrical Engineer whose career included working with wireless communications and later solar inverters. Loved the great outdoors. Predeceased by wife Jeni; father Roy; mother Eloise; sister Diane. Survived by brothers Larry and Kim; sister Lynda; daughters Chris and Lisa; grandson Max; and many loved family members. A Celebration of Life will be held at 1 PM Sat Feb 2, 2019 at Fruit & Spice Park, Redland FL. (Miami Herald newspaper 1-26-2019)
Randall “Randy” Douglas Woodbury was born 4/23/1949 the 4th child to Eloise & Roy Woodbury in Coconut Grove, Miami, FL at 3176 SW 27th Ave, a few steps north of Biscayne Bay. He moved with the family to Puerto Rico in 1955 at age 6 and started school at Antilles on the US Naval Base in San Juan. He was quite disappointed when we first arrived that he did not know Spanish yet and didn’t live in a tree house. Father Roy was the most knowledgeable botanist of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. He worked for US Dept of Agriculture Experiment Station and taught botany and ecology at the University of Puerto Rico in Rio Piedras. Family homes were in Rio Piedras, Caparra Heights, and Garden Hills. In 1963 Randy moved back to Florida with his mother and brother to 1220 Andora Ave., Coral Gables across from Univ of Miami. He attended Ponce De Leon Jr High and Coral Gables Sr High schools. While in high school, Randy had after school jobs in gas stations, enjoyed working on his 53 Jaguar XK120 roadster, his two bikes: BSA Lightning and Triumph 650, and met his HS sweetheart Debbie Sprague. Even though school was not his first priority, he made A’s on all his tests and achieved a very high score on the Florida Senior Placement exam.
Randy studied Electrical Engineering by correspondence at Cleveland Institute of Electronics, earned a diploma and passed exams for FCC Radiotelephone First Class License P1-7-10353, with Ship Radar Endorsement; and Amateur Radio License N-4NLC, all valid 1971-1997. He was always proud of his licenses that certified him to run a radio station.
Early 1971 Randy found a ride to CA with two girls for Summer of Love Continued. They argued incessantly. Half way across country, Randy asked them to stop the car, he got out, and hitchhiked to San Francisco; lived in Haight-Ashbury district on Fell St one block west of Ashbury, never wore shoes, learned crafts of leather, silver jewelry, and guitar; enjoyed the Freedom Celebrations of Peace, Love, Music, and selling his art at Union Square.
Back to Puerto Rico for a time, Randy lived in Arecibo and Aguada, worked in Rincon, the surfing capital of Puerto Rico, on Ramey Air Force Base loading cargo planes. In 1975 Camilo Vila, president of Three C Film Productions Inc. hired Randy as head electrician/gaffer for the movie “A Little Rain in a Small Corner,” the first of three films with the same team.” Randy’s second movie “Los Gusanos” began filming in Miami in 1977. Danilo Bardisa producer with Camilo Vila director; it was the first movie made by Cuban exiles dealing with politics.
Then Randy met Jeni Clark in Coconut Grove coming off her sailboat “Hope.” They moved in together, brought her daughter Chris from Michigan at age 11 to live with them. Randy had the Norton Commando motorcycle and a VW camper; they planted a garden, kept bees for honey, and raised orchids, and lived happily ever after for nearly 30 years. They shared Grove homes on McDonald Ave, then around the corner on Gifford Lane, that became a social happening hangout for local friends; next they moved south to Cutler Ridge 9480 Independence Dr. when Randy worked as cable service technician in Redland.
Their last farewell Miami address was 8399 SW 110 Street near US1, a lovely Dade county pine impenetrable cottage. These two loving companions worked together in the Dominican Republic with the Bardisa-Vila team on “Los Gusanos” and “Guaguasi.” Jeni sewed costumes and Randy of course was head electrician.
In the nine years from 1982 to 1991 Randy had four different “Service Manager/Lead Technician” positions in Miami: (1) Americable in the Redland, where he got his sister Lynda’s husband a job, (2) Amateur-Wholesale Electronics near the Falls, (3) N & G Distributing Corporation, (4) Condor Communications Inc. Condor sent him to Jeddah, Saudi Arabia for repair and design consultation Dec 1990. The Saudis wanted to keep him there; Randy was worried they would never let him go, but thank God it was Christmas. Being religious they did allow him to go be with his family for the holiday.
Before leaving the Florida Atlantic Coast, the happy couple traveled to the Bahamas, Jamaica, and Europe—England, Scotland, Ireland, France. Randy’s very favorite place was Paris. He loves the movie “Midnight in Paris,” watching it over and over. Planning their move to California, Jeni found a postal job transfer to Petaluma CA. Soon after Randy’s mother Eloise passed away they rented a moving van, filled it with plants and furniture, off to the Pacific West Coast in 1991. Both worked for USPS. Randy enjoyed the beauty of the countryside delivering mail, but soon wanted to get back to his electronic challenges.
Around 1992 he joined Advance Fiber Communications (AFC) as Engineering Technician and Hardware Engineer. In 2005 the company suffered an ownership turnover where most everyone lost their jobs.
In 1994 a small group, including the Engineering Group leader at AFC, founded Enphase Energy, now a major supplier in the solar industry, and hired Randy, as employee # 7. As Hardware Engineer, he designed, fixed, analyzed & solved problems with their new innovative solar microinverters. He worked at Enphase for eighteen years from 1994-2012.
Randy and Jeni had moved from Petaluma to the idyllic hilltop pasture in Sebastopol with sheep, Belgian horses, cows beyond the fences, wild turkeys, jack rabbits, hawks and humming birds buzzing the myriad roses, lilies, poppies, aloes, grapes, a beautiful pastoral paradise where the lovely fog rolls in to blanket the day, only about 15 miles to the Pacific Ocean. Randy bought a luxury four-door Jaguar XJ6 II sedan for Jeni to travel safely the hill slopes over Pacific Coast Hwy. She was scared the Miata would fall into the sea, which does happen there.
Randy was an expert in computers, networking, and anything electronic. He had a knack for mechanical things, especially cars and motorcycles; he owned 7 vehicles at his death.
Nature, wildlife, music, movies, radio, art, plants, peace were his passions, which he actively defended with memberships and donations to countless organizations.
Randy and Jeni were true soul-mates – always alone together in love. Their ashes are buried side-by-side in Naranja, Homestead, FL and in Munising, MI, Upper Peninsula. Jeni died unexpectedly at home one Saturday morning 24 September 2005, just after her birthday. Randy buried half of her ashes at her childhood home in Munising, MI. and kept ashes on the shelf over his pillow. He bought the home where Jeni was raised to keep her close, never could forget her. Now they must be happy together again, two soul-mate angels.
Randy passed away five days before his 69th birthday on 18 April 2019, as did his mother who also passed away a few days before her 69th. Randy died quietly at home, with little prior notice, not much pain. He still looked handsome, still smiling.
He was a gentle, kind person, with warm smiles and twinkling eyes, loving heart and hugs, always happy to help others. Everyone loved him. He loved and adored Jeni, his soul-mate. They loved nature, gardening, flowers, parks, birds, rocks, redwoods, beaches, road trips. May God bless these two lovers forever.