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Brian Nicholson, Deseret Morning News
Ron Randall, above, and his wife, Darlene, were recently inducted into Centerville's Hall of Fame.

CENTERVILLE — At 75 and 74 years, they have watched Centerville change from fruit orchards to suburbia. And even after becoming the newest members to Centerville's Hall of Fame, they still see themselves as ordinary people doing ordinary things.

"You couldn't find a nicer place to live and a safer place anywhere around," Darlene Randall said.

They met in grade school and married in 1949, a year after their high school graduation. He was offered a scholarship at Weber State University to play football and study mechanics, but turned the offer down because he was already doing what he wanted — being a mechanic at his brother's shop. That Main Street auto shop on the north side of town became Ron's Service in 1948. Because of Centerville's growth, the shop is now on the city's south side.

"It's so fun to go down and chat at Ron's Service with Ron. You never know what's going to come out," Councilman Dean Layton said, speaking of Ron Randall's sense of humor. Members of the hall of fame are chosen by the mayor and city council.

At the annual induction May 17, Mayor Michael Deamer read Proclamation 2005-3, naming the couple's accomplishments and why they were chosen.

Darlene Randall served as the Centerville Fourth of July Parade Chairman for five years, from 1989-94. She instigated the F-16 flyover for the parade and went door-to-door to businesses raising money and getting float entries for the parade.

"And that's just how she is with everything in her life. Everything is a party for her," Jane Randall, the couple's daughter-in-law, said. Jane Randall wrote the couple's personal histories.

Ron Randall has operated Ron's Service since 1948 and has served the community as a judge in 4-H shows, horse shows, rodeos, and parades. He is known as an excellent source of history and folklore to the community.

"I've learned mechanics by doing it. Instead of going to college, they call it the hard knocks," Ron Randall said. Even at 75, he doesn't plan on closing the shop anytime soon.

They are active seniors. Councilman Jack Dellastatious commented at the ceremony that he'd enjoyed driving by the couple's Main Street home and seeing them out walking several times. It doesn't end there.

The couple leads a ballroom-dancing group a few times a week and both are excellent equestrians. Ron Randall is the oldest chariot racer in Utah. He has been named the Utah High Point Man several times in his horse-racing career and in 1989 won an award for being the Most Distinguished Utah Horseman.

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Ron Randall considers his greatest achievement to be his family. He boasts four children, twelve grandchildren, two step-grandchildren, and eleven great-grandchildren.

Several members of the Randall Family were present at the reception and ceremony, held at a council meeting, including four of Ron Randall's brothers who still live in Centerville. Deamer also declared May 17, 2005 as Ron and Darlene Randall Day. The couple was presented with a picture of them that will hang in city hall, Centerville logo caps, and Centerville logo pins.

"They're 75, but they don't know they are. They still think they're 50," Jane Randall said.


E-MAIL: nandrews@desnews.com