MERIDEN - At age 100, Harris Bogart Randall, of Meriden, passed away Saturday, June 28, 2014, peacefully and surrounded by his family. His wife Dolores, the beautiful love of his life (his exact words), children, grandchildren and Buddy their beagle, were at his side. "Randy" was a creative and innovative individual of many talents as a businessman, designer, inventor; and famous for his songs and silly stories. He entertained his friends and family many a night, singing, and playing the trombone. He left his mark in Meriden and in industry. He created military and business telecommunication companies in Meriden, built the Holiday Motel, and served as director for the Meriden Chamber of Commerce, a member of the Home Club, and director of the former Laurel Bank. He invented the first two line telephone called Dual-Fone and the Interlink telephone. At his 100th birthday, he sang, clapped, and told those his all-too familiar stories. And his audience always asked for more. He designed his home in Meriden, and loved his peaceful Star Lake oasis. He spent countless hours working, but just as many hours appreciating and enjoying his home, yard, and nature surrounding it. His family, friends and neighbors always joined him in laughter, jokes, and celebration. The infamous stories, adventures, and anecdotes will be retold for time to come by all who knew him. He was a faithful parishioner at St. John's Lutheran Church in Meriden.
He was born in Orange, N.J., April 12, 1914, the son of George Randall and Ada Mae Hamell Randall and resided in Meriden for over 65 years. Mr. Randall was predeceased by his son, George 1992; and by his two sisters, Janet Pickel and Mary Friedman, of Toms River, N.J.; brother, George Randall, of Irvington N.J., and his brother, William Randall of Florida. Mr. Randall is a graduate of New York University
with a bachelor of science degree, SA College in Newark, N.Y. with an associate degree in engineering. Prior to moving to Meriden, Randy put himself through college playing in big bands and symphonies, with his father and brother in New York City, N.Y. And his most entertaining career, was that of selling the first Hoover vacuums and singing his famous Hoover Vacuum song many nights at dinner. His career continued in the public service and gas industry in Montclair, N.J.; sales manager of IT & T telephone systems in Nutley, N.J.; and sales manager at Meriden's own Connecticut Telephone and Electric Company, before opening his businesses in Meriden.
His family includes his wife of 52 years, Dolores, "the best thing that ever happened to him", and many children; grandchildren; great-grandchildren; nieces and nephews; daughter, Jacqueline Randall; and grandson, Ryan Zamboni, of Meriden; daughter, Mary Jean Giannetti and grandson, Nicholas Giannetti, of Meriden; son, Mark Gaylord, of Meriden, son, Edward Gagliola, of Meriden; granddaughter, Amber Gagliola; and great-grandchildren, Alina and Aniah (New Jersey); and son, Wayne Gaylord and his wife, Marina Spinelli, of Fasano del Garda, Italy and grandchildren, Wayne Gaylord (Arizona), John Gaylord and wife, Christa (Oregon); great-grandson, John; and grandson, Bryan Gaylord (Arizona); and granddaughter, Tracy Butcher daughter of John Gaylord (deceased) (South Carolina). Two children predeceased him George Randall and John Gaylord. Besides his children, Randy has nieces and nephews whom he adored. Susan Nelson (Florida) her children, Ingrid and Will; Jonathan Randall and his wife, Denise (Massachusetts); nephew, Wayne Randall and Brenda (Rhode Island), and great-niece and nephew and their children, Amy (Chase) Randall, Joe Randall and Michelle Randall.
Family and friends are invited to pay their respects on Wednesday, July 2, from 5 until 7 p.m. at the Stempien Funeral Home, 450 Broad St., Meriden. Burial will be private and at the convenience of the family. To send an online expression of sympathy, please visit www.stempienfuneralhome.com.
In lieu of flowers donations in memory of Mr. Randall may be made to St. John Lutheran Church, 520 Paddock Ave., Meriden, CT 06450.