By the time you read this, I will be gone. My health is not what it should be these days, the result of a lifetime of doing all the wrong things.
I just want to take the time to say good-bye to those of you out there I’ve come to know in the internet land. I’ve never met any of you and never expected to, but I consider you friends and hope you do the same. The same likes and interests brought us together.
It made my life better to a degree to follow your blogs each day, to laugh or cry at the things you posted on, to participate in discussions on various subjects. My disability kept me confined to the house for the most part. I can go in my car on a limited basis to any place where I didn’t have to get out(kind of limits destinations though). Mostly it is just trips to doctors.
I live alone. Family members or friends call or come by every day to help out(I don’t know how I’d have made it without them), but I’m alone most of the day. So mostly my world consisted of books, my computer, and television in that order.
One thing I’ve missed the last few years is going to the brick and mortar book stores. My little town had a Waldenbooks, but it closed a few years back, and there are no others, not even a used store. The nearest city with bookstores is thirty-eight miles away. It has the usual chains and a couple of independents as well, though bookstores in general are slowly starting to disappear.
The internet and Amazon made it possible for me to get books delivered here. That was only good for things I knew about though. That stumbling across the occasional little gem was a thing of the past except for all you folks’ blogs. Especially Patti Abbott’s Forgotten Books on Fridays. That brought a wealth of new finds for me(I wish I could have afforded all of them). But I found recommendations from all of you that I might never have tried otherwise.
It’s been a lot of fun. I’m saving this post and will have a family member post the particulars when the time comes.
Good Bye to all!
This can’t be happening!!!!
Bill Crider said:
Dammit, Randy! You’ll be much missed, and it was a pleasure to know you and to think of you as an online friend. I’m terribly sad that things had to end like this, sad for you and sad for all of us who followed your blog. You never let on that things were this bad, and I admire you for that. Godspeed.
Tracy Craven said:
This is his nephew. Uncle Randy passed away today around 6pm est. Part of his final wishes arranged before his passing was for one of us to post this to his blog. We have cross posted to Facebook as well.
I so wish this wasn’t true.
Barry Ergang said:
I’m terribly, terribly sorry, and send condolences to Randy’s family.
Tracy Craven said:
I have no idea if he had more posts lined up to auto publish, I saw a few in there as I was searching for this post, but didn’t check them too closely. I’ll leave them to post if there are any, as he intended.
James Reasoner said:
Oh, man, no. Farewell, my friend.
Elgin Bleecker said:
I would like to extend my condolences to Randy’s family. It was less than a year ago that I discovered his blog. I enjoyed his posts, especially the reviews of spaghetti westerns, which he seemed to enjoy so much.
Nik Morton said:
My condolences to you Tracy and the rest of Randy’s family. I – and many others – have lost a friend.
Patti AbbottPatti said:
I am sick with grief. I,guess letting us in the the situation at hand would have made things change. We would have been waiting with him instead of enjoying books with him. I am heartbroken for the second time in six months over a terrible loss!
David Cranmer said:
Randy, it was just last Wednesday, on Facebook, that you sent me a direct message about an author to follow because he had written a book on Bass Reeves. I did. Gladly. Because you recommended it. I’ve told you this before but I bought more books based on what you suggested than anyone else. That goes for all the films as well. What I’m writing seems so insignificant to the feelings I have inside. What I really want to do is reach out and give you a big hug and say, thank you for the past seven years of friendship, friend. You will be greatly missed.
Todd Mason said:
A kind man, and a thoughtful man. I had gathered he was not having much fun with motility, but hadn’t realized how tough things were, as he was still writing well. Sorry, folks…glad you as his family where there to help him, and that you who were his longer-term virtual friends have been helping him be vital.
Jerry House said:
Terrible news. A dear online friend is gone and part of all us died with him. My deepest sympathies to his family and his many, many friends.
George Kelley said:
I’m saddened by the loss of Randy. His reviews of westerns were particularly insightful. Randy’s comments were always fun to read. He didn’t hide the fact that his health was declining. He didn’t dwell on it. Randy just stayed as active as he could. For that, he deserves our respect. My condolences go out to his family. We’ll all miss Randy…a lot.
Alex J. Cavanaugh (@AlexJCavanaugh) said:
Rest in peace, Randy. Appreciated your posts and that you enjoyed my books. Prayers for your family.
BV Lawson said:
Oh dear, this is dreadful news. We’ve lost another one of our FFB “family,” and didn’t even know he was so close to the end. I like to think Ron Scheer was one of the first to greet him on the other side and that maybe they’re tipping back a few while discussing their favorite books. RIP, Randy, and condolences to your family.
This is a terrible loss. Rest in peace, Randy, may you have your health and book in your new place. I’m sad for we who are left without you.
Tracy Craven said:
George “Randy” Randall Johnson, 65 passed away July 12, 2015 at his home. A memorial service will be held 2pm Saturday, July 18th at the First Church of the Bretheren in Eden with burial will follow in Danview Cemetery at a later date.
Randy was born October 24, 1949 to Billy Ray Johnson and Elaine Radford Burchett in Rockinham Country, NC. He was a member of The First Church of the Bretheren and worked as a clerk for Pillowtex.
Surviving are his mother Elaine R. Burchett and husband John of Eden, NC, sister Jean Craven and husband Jacob of Eden, NC, brother Alan Burchett of Eflin, NC, nieces Diane Burgess, Mandy Silvers and husband Allen, Olivia, Hilary, and Merideth, a nephew Tracy Craven, and five great nephews Ryan, Avery, Zane, Trey, and Gabriel. Preceeding him in death are two sisters Linda Sparks and Sue Lynch.
Visitation will be held one hour prior to the memorial service from 1 until 2pm and other times at the home of his sister Jean Craven, 801 Hampton St. Eden. Memorial donations can be made to the First Church of the Bretheren: 730 Church Street., Eden NC 27288. Online condolences can be made to http://www.fairfuneralhome.com
Lana Gramlich said:
I never met you in “real” life, but you have touched me, nonetheless and I mourn your loss (like so many others.) We will miss you much, brother.
Todd Mason said:
Thanks, Mr. Craven…and all sympathy to your family.
gary dobbs said:
Devastated. You were a true friend and I will miss you.
My sympathies and my thoughts go out to Randy’s family. I am so sorry for your loss. And for ‘our’ loss here in the blog community.
Evan Lewis said:
I salute you, Randy. Took a lot of class – and guts – to write that knowing the end was near.
I belong to the silent audience of Randy’s website and reading this late post made my heart sink… I can’t swallow. He reviewed a couple of books of mine and always was a gentleman. He loved a lot of things Science Fiction and Western. It’s infrequent to meet a lover of the so called “Spaghetti Western” genre, and I hope all his posts will remain up forever for the benefit of the community.
Randy was wise, witty, and a kind soul. I’m sure he’ll find his way to a better place–an endless prairie where he’ll forever ride with his heroes of old.
My heartfelt condolences to his family.
So sorry to hear about this. My condolences to Randy’s family and friends for their loss.
Chap O'Keefe said:
Clearly a grievous loss, both to a real family and the wider and far-flung “family” Randy gathered around him via the Internet. Randy was an enthusiastic and supportive reviewer. But he was ready to take it a step further, too. We exchanged the odd health comment, as older boys sometimes get around to doing in a brief, no-fuss fashion. His last message to me contained the sentence: “I hope the check-up goes well, Keith.” Those few caring words after an operation for kidney cancer said something to me as important as the generous reviews Randy posted on my books at this blog, Amazon, and Goodreads. And undeniably the world of Western appreciation will be smaller without him.
Prashant C. Trikannad said:
My deepest sympathies to Randy’s family. I knew Randy via his blog and his regular updates on Fb that made me aware of his wide interests, be it books, films or current affairs. I will miss him.
Patti Abbott said:
All this time later, Randy, if you’re still listening, we are still thinking about you.