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Alumni Happenings - January 2005
Grand County High School

“Voice of the Red Devils,”
Randy Day and wife Crystal Day

by Jeff Richards

Former high school sweethearts Randy Day and Crystal Cortes Day are proud members of Grand County High’s Class of 1977, which, with 127 graduates, is believed to be the largest graduating class the school has ever had.

Since getting married soon after graduation, the Days have remained residents of the Moab area, raising a family of four children (Jeramy, 25, Tyson, 23, Kira, 19, and Kellen, 16). The oldest three are all currently in college (one at Weber State University and two at Utah Valley State College), while Kellen attends GCHS.

All through their married life, Randy and Crystal have been actively involved in Grand County High sports and activities. Randy is known as the “Voice of the Devils” for his role as a radio announcer for GCHS football and basketball radio broadcasts. He has also been active as a youth coach for various sports and age groups (Little League, city rec, high school, etc.) for over 25 years. Crystal has been in charge of homecoming royalty for the past several years. They also support a wide variety of other GCHS activities, including sports, school plays, concerts, and debate competitions.

While in high school, Randy played on the Red Devils football team, which took second in state his junior year. He also served as senior class vice president. Crystal, meanwhile, was junior class attendant in the homecoming royalty as an 11th grader.

After their marriage, Randy worked for Moab Bit & Tool for several years and attended night school through the USU Extension office. “I then decided to get into real estate with the assistance of Phyllis Cortes and Delbert Oliver at the old All American Agency,” said Randy, now a broker at Anasazi Realty in Moab. “The old saying about how it takes a community to raise a child is true in my case.”

“I remember (high school) football well, and what Coach Richeson and the other coaches taught us about life on the field of play,” Randy added. “He taught us how to win with class and to never accept a loss. But if you should happen to lose, do it with class.”

“With that in mind, I have always done my best to be a gracious winner and a humble loser, but I always want to win,” he continued.

Crystal fondly remembers her high school U.S. history class, taught by Mr. Robinson. “He brought the Civil War to life for me,” she recalled. “I was really good in home economics and Mrs. Holyoak allowed me to sew things that were beyond what she was teaching,” she added.

Crystal also she said she appreciates having taken a first aid class from Mr. Richeson, and noted that she actually got to use the skills she’d learned to help treat a man who had broken his leg in a car accident in which two others had died. “That was probably one of the most practical classes I have ever had,” she noted. “It’s too bad they don’t teach it anymore.”

Randy also had Richeson’s first aid class, and remembers doing one-legged push-ups for the coach. Other teachers Randy remembers well include coaches Mr. Leonard, Mr. Pierce, and Mr. Meador, history teacher Mr. Robinson, auto shop teacher Mr. Gray, and teachers Mrs. Brownell and Mrs. Foy. “All in all, I would have to say that I had super teachers in high school,” Randy said.

In addition to being a full-time mom, the ever-busy Crystal has had a number of side jobs over the years. She operates her own machine quilting business and also teaches life skills classes and EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) classes with her friend Pat Ferguson.

“I love the people of Moab,” said Crystal. “There is so much diversification. I am constantly learning from Moab people. They are always there for you, and will help you out any way they can, no matter what they believe or how they live.”

Randy agreed, adding that he would especially like to thank his school teachers for really caring about the kids. “High school teachers and coaches can have a profound effect on young people,” he noted. “I owe a lot to Grand County High.”

Randy recently shared an experience that happened when he was a junior in the fall of 1975, as he and his fellow Red Devil footballers traveled to University of Utah’s Rice Stadium to play in the 2A state championship game. He found out when he got to practice the day before the game that metal cleats were not allowed on the field’s artificial turf. “That night, I practiced in my stocking feet and had no idea where I could get shoes,” Randy said. “I was living by myself in the Red Rock Lodge and was working nights and weekends, but I didn’t have enough money to buy a new pair of shoes.”

Without telling anyone else of his plight, Randy first decided he would play the game in his stocking feet, but then just before the game he had the idea to try and remove the metal cleats from the bottoms of his shoes. But when he got to the locker room to get dressed before the game, he found a surprise. “I got to my assigned locker and opened it up, and there, in front of my gear, hung a new pair of red and white Converse tennis shoes with a note that simply read, ‘Have a good game!’ he recalled. “I never played harder in my life than I did that day, wanting to win for whoever got me those shoes.”

The Red Devils didn’t win the game, but Randy believes that he won something that day that he could never lose. “Because of some wonderful person or persons that to this day still remain unknown to me, I was given the desire to give back something I was given, and it is a lot more than a pair of shoes,” he said. “Thank you Grand County High and the town of Moab. I hope I can repay you for your lessons.”

Editor’s note: This is the first of a monthly series of articles featuring former GCHS students. If you or someone you know is interested in being the subject of a future article similar in format to this one, please e-mail us at info@moabhappenings.com or call us at 259-8431. Please provide the name, year of graduation, phone number and other contact information for the person being nominated.

 
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