Rutledge, Randy Michael

Randy Michael Rutledge

February 19, 1966 – January 22, 2021

Navarre – Randy Michael Rutledge (age 54), resident of Navarre, FL passed peacefully in his home on 22 Jan 2021. Randy was born on February 19, 1966 in Callicoon, NY to Mary Ellen Steinhour and Robert Rutledge. He married Christine Michaelle Williams on May 3, 1986 in Fort Walton Beach, FL. Randy graduated from Arkansas University with a Master’s Degree in Program Management.

Randy joined the Air Force in January of 1984 and was stationed at Eglin Air Force Base working on F15’s for the 33rd Fighter Squadron. Soon after assigned to the 20th Special Operations team 53 PaveLow Unit. On Sep 7, 1995 Randy was deployed to the Bosnia conflict. During a mission to rescue two downed French Pilots, his aircraft received heavy enemy gunfire. While returning fire, he was struck by enemy small arms, which led to Randy receiving a Purple Heart. Since then he has received many more awards and accolades. Randy proudly served 20 years in the service and was honorably discharged. He then entered the Civil Service up till the day he passed. Randy was a lifetime member of the VFW Spectre 113677 serving in various positions within the organization.

Randy was known for his contagious laugh, warm heart and incredible mind. He was a man of many talents; jack of all trades. He could transition from being a warrior, father, and a brother in a heartbeat. He was a man of infinite wisdom and always held out his hand to help someone in need. While serving as an Aerial Gunner, he often spoke about how much he loved flying and everyone knew if time would’ve allowed, he would’ve flown forever. He was a passionate hunter and loved teaching his son, and going hunting with him. One of his proudest joys was building a tiny home for his hunting camp with his daughter.

Randy is survived by: his wife, Christine of 34 years, daughter Jennifer and husband Matthew Jones of Santa Rosa Beach, FL, son Jeffery and girlfriend Kiffanie of Williamsburg VA. His brother, Robert and Sheri Rutledge, and brother, Ryan Rutledge of Tyler Hill, PA. His sister-in-law, Kelly and Kerry Cartwright and brother in law, Thomas Williams. As well as various nieces and nephews. Preceded in death by his father, Robert Rutledge.

Visitation service is Tuesday 26 Jan 2021 from 6-8 pm at Emerald Coast Funeral Home in Fort Walton Beach, FL. Funeral Services is Wednesday 27 Jan 2021 is at 11 am at Emerald Coast Funeral Home.

Graveside services to follow at Beal Memorial Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Wounded Warrior Special Operations Fund at specialops.org in Randy’s name. Expressions of love and sympathy may be viewed and read at www.emeraldcoastfuneralhome.com

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Published in Northwest Florida Daily News from Jan. 25 to Jan. 26, 2021.https://obits.nwfdailynews.com/obituaries/nwfdailynews/obituary.aspx?n=randy-michael-rutledge&pid=197585375&fhid=10288

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