Honoring the Life and Dedicated Service of Northwest Florida’s James Randell ``Randy’’ Stokes, Sr.by Representative Jeff Miller
Posted on 2015-12-16
in the house of representatives
Wednesday, December 16, 2015
Mr. MILLER of Florida. Mr. Speaker, it is with profound sadness that
I rise to honor the life and dedicated service of James Randell
``Randy'' Stokes, Sr. of Fort Walton Beach, Florida, who died on
December 8, 2015.
Mr. Stokes was born in Andalusia, Alabama in the fall of 1932. During the Korean War, he left high school to join the United States Army and became an intelligence sergeant. Although only 18 years old, he graduated in the top eight from the Light Artillery Battalion Leadership School. In 1952, Mr. Stokes was honorably discharged and returned home to Andalusia to finish high school, where he lettered in football, basketball, baseball, and track. Following graduation, he attended Troy State University to play football and study engineering. Then, in 1954, he transferred to Auburn University where he received his Bachelor's degree in Architecture.
In 1959, Mr. Stokes moved to Fort Walton Beach, the city he would call home until his passing. Upon arriving in Florida, he began working at Ricks and Kendrick Architect, Inc. and became partner after 10 years. In 1988, he started his own firm--Stokes Architectural, Inc.
Mr. Stokes has been honored by the Florida Association of the American Institute of Architects for his leadership and community service benefitting the profession of architecture. His architectural work is on display in many Northwest Florida landmarks, including Saint Mary's School and Church in Fort Walton Beach, Niceville High School, Choctawhatchee High School, Fort Walton Beach High School, Northwest Florida State College, the Greater Fort Walton Beach Chamber of Commerce building, the Walton County Chamber of Commerce building, White Wilson Medical Center, and Westwood Retirement Center, among others.
In addition to his architectural contributions, Mr. Stokes was a leader in Northwest Florida's civic society, serving as president of the Greater Fort Walton Beach Chamber of Commerce, twice as president of the local YMCA, councilmember and Mayor of the City of Mary Esther, president of the Fort Walton Beach Rotary Club, and a member of the Krewe of Bowlegs.
Mr. Speaker, on behalf of the U.S. House of Representatives, I am proud to honor the dedicated service of Randy Stokes. Vicki and I will keep his entire family, especially his son, James Jr. and daughter-in- law, Andrea; daughter, Judy and son-in-law, Ken; daughter, Jennifer; daughter, Janet and son-in-law, Don; as well as his grandchildren Ross, Annie, Ryan, Christina, Drew, Conner, LylaKae, Bryna, Rand, and Champ; his nieces Terri and Mellie; and his siblings Betty, Tommy, Kevin, Jerry, and Silvia in our thoughts and prayers.