Submitted by his mother
A career firefighter‚ Capt. Randall E. Carpenter‚ 46‚ died November 25‚ 2002‚ when the burning roof of a business in downtown Coos Bay collapsed. Two volunteer firefighters also died battling the blaze. Randy had been a firefighter for a total of 23 years‚ beginning his career as a volunteer‚ then full-time with the Baker City Fire Department‚ before moving to a position with the Coos Bay Fire Department in February 1989. He was Baker City’s 1983 ‘Firefighter of the Year’‚ and Coos Bay’s 1991 ‘Firefighter of the Year’. He was also Coos Bay’s 1999 ‘EMT of the Year’.
Randy’s interest in firefighting began early in his life when he would accompany his father‚ a volunteer firefighter for Baker City for 46 years. During the time he was a volunteer‚ Randy was very active in the Oregon Volunteer Firefighter Association and served in all state association offices‚ including president. Randy was a consummate professional and was highly qualified in all operational and procedural aspects of his job. He was part of the original efforts to bring a hazardous materials unit to Coos Bay and was a specialist in HAZMAT. He was qualified and certified to teach all subjects of firefighting and regularly taught courses in CPR and EMT Basic at the local college in Coos Bay. He took great pride in his job and treasured the trust and respect of all his firefighter brethren. He was an active member of the International Association of Firefighters‚ IAFF‚ Local 2935 (served as President during 1991)‚ and the Regional Hazardous Materials Team. He was also skilled in construction and built a successful contracting business with his good friend Jim Bush.
The love of family was very foremost in Randy’s life. He was so proud of and totally dedicated to his two girls‚ Sarah and Stephanie‚ with priority in providing for their needs. He is also survived by his parents‚ Wayne and Dru‚ three brothers‚ Kerry‚ Brad‚ and Jeff‚ their spouses and families‚ and his companion‚ Christine Farmer-Benson.
Randy was usually very successful when he took his boat out ‘crabbing’‚ and was always happy when he could take time to go waterskiing‚ at which he was very adept. He especially loved spending time in Eastern Oregon (Dad & Mom referred to him as their ‘homing pigeon’) where he would hunt deer‚ elk‚ and antelope‚ along with working with longtime friends on the Bunch Ranch near Durkee. While Randy had a wonderful sense of humor and enjoyed playing a practical joke‚ he never wanted the limelight‚ just a way to be of help. His honesty and integrity were unquestionable. Randy will be missed beyond description by all his family and his countless friends who were like family to him.
The Randy Carpenter Memorial Firefighter Training Fund has been established to provide funds to aid in needed training for Coos County and Baker County firefighters and emergency personnel.