Randy Carter: A Friend a Friend Would Like to Have
A remembrance of a fine man
“After a storm that took down the big tree in your yard, Randy Carter would be the first guy to come over, chain saw in hand, to help clean up the mess.
“Randy was the person most likely to have the number one spot on your speed dial.”
“Randy didn’t have a bad bone in his body, and everyone can learn from the example he set for us in not only being better workers, but being better people.”
These are just a few of comments and sentiments that poured in from co-workers and colleagues as word spread of the unexpected passing of our friend Randy Carter, Technical Sales Representative at Provident Group. He was 44 years old.
“Randy’s departure leaves a hole,” says Andy Gillis, General Manager at Provident. “No one is irreplaceable, but we all feel this loss. It’s a gap we see in the outpouring of messages from colleagues at Anderson & Vreeland and Provident, as well as from customers. He was a kind-hearted man and a gentle soul.”
This nature was exemplified in the way Randy was accepting of everyone, no matter how much they knew—or didn’t know. “He would always take a genuine interest in topics raised by anyone he was talking with, letting them know he was truly interested.” says Dave Miller, Director of Digital Solutions at Anderson & Vreeland. “People always value and respect this trait, and this alone gained Randy the admiration and respect of everyone he interacted with.”
Through his career in the flexographic space, Randy worked with several major companies after graduating from Clemson University in 1996. He had an engineer’s mind, and built his own computers in his younger days, experience that provided the foundation for his first-rate technical and problem solving skills. He brought these traits to every customer, whether he was training them on the nuances of flexography or seeking answers to practical challenges. In every instance Randy always offered up the best practices, and more importantly, knew how to lead colleagues and customers to the best possible answers or solutions.
Jessica Harrell, Manager of the Anderson & Vreeland Technical Team, worked with Randy when she was a senior at Clemson. “He had graduated a few years before me and was working at the school’s PrintCon Center,” she says. “Randy helped me design, research, and print a number of special projects related to wide-web flexo. We stayed connected, initially through industry events and then as team members at Anderson & Vreeland. Randy was always able to provide great problem-solving advice, along with a side helping of light-hearted joking! I will miss his friendship, kindness, and technical knowledge.”
Randy’s skills and knowledge sometimes took him north to Anderson & Vreeland’s Canadian operations. Many customers there have expressed thankfulness for Randy’s guidance, technical support and the help he provided them and their businesses.
“It is not a stretch to say that we couldn’t have grown our business the way we have without Randy,” says Sean Sawa, Director of Sales for A&V Canada. “Randy was always ready to support us and taught us a great deal, not about only the products, but how to be professional as well. He was a very rare talent in our industry and his understanding and knowledge made him sought after and respected on this side of the border.”
Randy’s engineering skills and “always here to help” attitude also extended to the many trade shows and industry events he attended and participated in on behalf of Provident and Anderson & Vreeland. Randy, along with his colleague Jeff Wyble, commonly spent several days before events designing and constructing trade-show booths for both companies. Having Randy’s engineering mind on site was invaluable because there are always “surprises” during design and set-up and Randy would invariably engineer mechanical or electronic solutions.
Randy was one of those rare people who could walk into a flexo shop, scan the room, identify a problem, then work with everyone from the business owner to the assistant on the press, teaching them how to find the best solution—and also how they could do and be better.
“He was the guy who could figure out what other people couldn’t,” said one colleague. “He was the kind of person you loved to have in your life.“