Honoring Our Heroes
This area is dedicated to our alumni that have served or are serving in our armed forces!
Lost Class Rings
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In Memory Of
Class of 1964
Passed Aug 15, 2012
Class of 1947
Passed Jul 08, 2014
Class of 1955
Passed Feb 13, 2009
Class of 1974
Passed Mar 24, 2012
Randy was preceded in his death by his father, Robert Dender. He is survived by his loving wife Peggy Dender; two sons Ryan (Ashley) Dender and Michael Dender; three grandchildren: Reed, Cade and Bailey Dender; mother Barbara Dender; brothers Robert Dender and Ronald Dender and many nieces and nephews.
Randy graduated from the University of Tennessee with a Bachelor of Architecture in 1981 with Honors. Randy used his degree and talents as an architect over the years working for other architects and builders and eventually owning and operating his own family business here in Tallahassee, Randall E. Dender, Architect-Builder, LLC, d/b/a Dender Remodeling & Construction. He loved the time he spent with his clients helping them remodel and repair their homes. Many of his clients became friends over the years.
Randy leaves a legacy filled with faith, loyalty, honesty, decency and most importantly his love of family, which commends him to our memory as a great man.
Class of 1964
Passed Mar 13, 2013
Submitted by his brother, Mike.
Class of 1974
Passed Feb 17, 2017
First, I want to thank everyone for being part of my father’s life here on earth. There are so many ways to honor my father. But today, I want to honor him by sharing, not about who Dad was but WHY Dad was who he was. Simply put, he understood his purpose and everything he did was for that purpose. I can’t count how many times Dad quoted this scripture verse but I know this one kept him going in life.
Romans 8:28: And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.
Dad’s purpose was to love God with all his heart and to share about God’s love with all his might. Everything Dad did was driven by this purpose. We can be here all day if I shared with you all the examples of how Dad displayed his love for God but I will focus on two stories today.
First story is about his professional career.
Dad’s career choice was a clear sign of how he wanted to live out his purpose. As a college professor, Dad taught students the importance of finding their calling in life. God gave Dad a heart for Japan and many students and faculty came to know Jesus. When we were in Japan, Dad would often invite his students to our house for fellowship and I know so many students respected him and loved him. Dad would often come home late because students came to his office for counseling not just about their careers but also about life. He gave more than what he received and I know his legacy still lives in many students’ lives today.
The unfortunate thing about this for me is that Dad taught technical writing and communication so I know he has a red pen right now grading my speech.
Second story is about his fight with cancer.
Dad was diagnosed with Sarcoma cancer in October of 2014 and had to amputate his right foot to prevent the cancer from spreading. Dad had a heart attack in August of 2015, and had stents put in his heart. In 2016, Sarcoma cancer had spread to his lungs and doctors told him he had 6 months at most to live. He experienced three life threatening tragedies in a row but he never complained and kept reminding us that God is using these tragedies to change people’s lives. Dad would always share the promises God showed him through the Bible reminding where true peace and joy come from. Dad started a blog to share his experience and promises that are written in the Bible. There are over 10,000 people from all different countries and religions that read his blog and he would often tell us how it was inspiring people to be good citizens in society.
As a family, we were able to spend quality time in the hospital and hospice facility before Dad passed away. You can tell about a person’s true character when they are facing death. One of the doctors at the hospital told us how Dad would tell the medical staff that he didn’t know how to feel anxiety because his joy and peace came from God. He was full of joy and peace and his words were full of encouragement even in his final days.
So the why behind who Dad was, the credit goes all to Jesus Christ. Even death could not separate Dad’s love for Jesus. We will miss Dad while we are here on earth but we know that we will reunite with him in heaven for eternity. Some advice that Dad would often give me, I would like to pass along to you today:
Pursue God and live according to his purpose that he reveals to you. Mature in every aspect of your being so you can experience the fullness of life.
Class of '07
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