Randy Blair

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Randall Scott "Randy" Blair

(Businessman and community and political activist)

Randy Blair of Laredo.jpg
Political party Republican chairman in Webb County, Texas (2008-2018)

Born July 8, 1960
Place of birth missing

Resident of Laredo, Texas (1982-2019)

Died January 19, 2019 (aged 58)
San Antonio, Texas
Spouse Nancy Barbara Stewart Blair (married 1986-2019, his death)

Son:
Roger Andrew Blair
Parents:
Elliott, Sr., and Mary Patricia Blair

Religion Roman Catholic

Randall Scott Blair, known as Randy Blair (July 8, 1960[1]– January 19, 2019), was an accountant in Laredo, Texas, who from 2008 to 2018 was the chairman of the Webb County Republican Party. At the time of his death from non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, Blair was president-elect of the Washington's Birthday Celebration Association. When stricken with the cancer five months earlier, he resigned as the GOP chairman, but the WBCA trustees refused to accept his resignation, and he retained the title "president-elect" of the association though he could do nothing in the last few months of his life for the 2019 celebration.[2]

Background

Blair was one of three children of Mary Patricia "Pat" Blair (born October 16, 1931) and United States Army major, Elliott Blair, Sr. (1929-2013), who was the mayor from 1976 to 1981 and then 1990 to 1991 of Killeen[3] in Bell County in Central Texas, the site of the Fort Hood military post. He has a brother, Elliott Blair, Jr., and a sister, Kellie Ann Bacon. In his youth Blair was an Eagle Scout and continued in adulthood to support that organization. He graduated in 1982 with a Bachelor of Science degree in accounting from Texas A&M University in College Station and came thereafter to Laredo to work in business.[2]

Blair and his wife of thirty-two years, the former Nancy Barbara Stewart (born November 15, 1955), owned Blair & Blair PC accounting firm. Their son, Roger Andrew Blair (born October 6, 1990), resides in Houston, Texas.

Career

During his decade as GOP chairman, which ended on September 12, 2018, amid state and national elections, Blair worked to mobilize the party in Laredo and to connect with others across the aisle. But the Laredo GOP had little success, having rarely even offered Republican candidates at the local level and losing all races, locally, state, and national. In the last United States Senate election, the Republican incumbent, Ted Cruz polled 28.2 percent of the ballots cast in Webb County in his otherwise successful race against the Democrat Beto O'Rourke of El Paso. Governor Greg Abbott polled 33.7 percent of the vote in his statewide victory over the Democrat Lupe Valdez, a former sheriff of Dallas County.[4]

Bair was succeeded as chairman by Bill Young, whom he had recruited to the party organization. Young recalled that Blair "listened to everybody, and he never really criticized anybody. He tried to uplift everybodyand I think we can all learn from that." When Hurricane Harvey devastated Houston, Blair and Young hauled sixty-six briskets to Port Aransas and barbecued for the community at a Stripes gas station. Young added that Blair was "just a very, very good person.It was inspiring to be around him, He was an outstanding human being and that’s the best way to put it.”[2]

Civic and religious life

Blair volunteered for more than thirty years for the Washington Birthday association. The association's former president, Pati Guajardo, said that Blair's death "leaves a huge void. He will be dearly missed by all who knew him and who had the honor of working alongside him.” In 1995 and 2002, Blair received the WBCA President's Award. He was also an active supporter of Bethany, a shelter for the homeless in downtown Laredo.[2]

Blair and Richard Castillon were inducted into the Roman Catholic Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem, a papal order for whom Blair frequently provided transportation assistance. Bishop James Tamayo nominated Blair, who was inducted in 2011. Castillon said that Blair's Catholic faith was "really important to him, not for rules or regulations but he saw it as a means of service to others," regardless of political party or organizational ties. Veronica Castillon, a WBCA lifetime director and past president, recalled Blair's frequent "faith-based actions. I am reminded of the words of Christ in the Gospel of Matthew: ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to oneof the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.' Well done, Randy Blair. You have run the race and now you're home in the place where you belong.”[2]

On her husband's passing, Mrs. Blair said that she felt "a great loss; we did everything together. We were partners in marriage and business and many of the organizations we served in the community. I lost my better half."[2]

References

  1. Randy Blair. Mylife.com. Retrieved on January 27, 2019.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Lisa Dreher. Randy Blair dies at age 58. The Laredo Morning Times. Retrieved on January 27, 2019.
  3. Killeen Mayors. Wilcfry.com. Retrieved on January 27, 2019.
  4. Webb County U.S. Senate and gubernatorial election returns,2018. Texas Secretary of State. Retrieved on January 27, 2019.