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Ralph T. Randono

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Ralph T. Randono, 78, of Great Falls, a retired attorney, died of natural causes Wednesday, Sept. 26, at a local hospital.

His funeral liturgy is 2 p.m. Monday at St. Ann's Cathedral, with a reception to follow. An inurnment will follow the reception at Mount Olivet Cemetery. Schnider Funeral Home is handling arrangements.

Ralph T. Randono was born in Butte on June 29, 1934. He moved to Great Falls at an early age and attended local schools. He attended Great Falls High School, where he excelled in academics and was a multi-sport letterman, graduating in 1952. He attended Boy's State and played in the East–West Shrine Game. He attended the University of Denver on an academic/athletic scholarship, where he played baseball and football graduating with his Bachelor of Science degree in 1956. He attended the University of Montana Law School and received his law degree in 1958 and was admitted to the bar. At the time of his graduation he was the second youngest person to ever graduate from law school. In June of 1958, he was appointed interim Justice of the Peace at the age of 23.

In January of 1959, he was appointed Deputy County Attorney for Cascade County and served in that capacity for approximately nine years. He practiced law in Great Falls for 32 years and was involved in many high-profile criminal cases throughout Montana. He served on many civic boards. He served on the State of Montana Board of Investments, he was a trustee for the State Bar of Montana and on the Supreme Court Commission on Revision of Criminal Jury Instructions. He served for many years on the state board of directors for Special Olympics, the board of directors for the Wesley Center, was very active for many years in the Cursillo Movement and was active in Saint Luke's Parish, where he was a lector. He was a volunteer for the Court Appointed Special Guardian program for several years. He served on the board of directors of Gateway Recovery. He was an active member of Alcoholics Anonymous for more than 35 years.

He married Betty Childs in 1957, and they were divorced in 1989. He married Peggy Pesek in 1991.

After he ceased practicing law, Ralph and his wife Peggy operated Heritage Marketing in Great Falls, which was a highly successful national telemarketing magazine sales firm. Of all of his accomplishments, he was most proud of the fact that he conceived and implemented the idea of operating magazine telemarketing sales offices in prisons, which had never been done in the United States. At various times, he and Peggy operated sales offices in five prisons in Montana and four in New Mexico, employing several hundred inmates. Always a champion of the less fortunate, some of his proudest moments were when he was able to employ a person in the civilian office who formerly worked for him in a prison. After selling his magazine business, Peggy and Ralph developed real estate in Great Falls, including the second phase of Riverview Townhomes and were principals in the development of Falls Condominiums.

Ralph was an avid sports fan and a strong supporter of the University of Montana football team. He loved to travel. A large part of his travel joy was the annual month to six weeks he and Peggy spent in Maui each year for more than 20 years. True to his form, when in Maui, he made lasting friendships with the locals and people from across the United States. He truly loved people from all walks of life, and his greatest pleasure was making people laugh and laughing with them.

He is survived by his wife, Peggy Randono; daughters Julie Macek and her husband Mark of Great Falls, Darcy Dauderis of Costa Mesa, Calif., Gia Fairchild and her husband Wayne of Missoula; son David Dauderis of Seattle; granddaughters Jenna (Cody) McConville, Krista and Kendra and Natalina and Schuyler; and a great-grandson, Kamden of Great Falls; a niece, Susan Fogarty of Boulder City, Nev., and a nephew Jim Randono of Las Vegas.

He was preceded in death by his sons, Jeff Randono and Tom Maybury; his brother Gene; and his nephews, Tony Randono and Bill Randono.

In lieu of flowers contributions may be made to CASA-CAN Court Appointed Special Advocates in Great Falls, 325 2nd Ave N., Great Falls, MT 59401.

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Published in Great Falls Tribune on Sept. 28, 2012
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