Randy O’Brien Dies at 66 – Memorial Set For June 16
By Space Coast Daily // June 7, 2012
BREVARD COUNTY • MERRITT ISLAND, FLORIDA — Local businessman and political leader, Randy O’Brien of Merritt Island, passed away early Saturday morning at age 66.
O’Brien had been suffering from complications regarding his liver, had recently returned from the Mayo Clinic and was in local hospice care.
Neighbors and friends on Sykes Creek on Merritt Island were saddened today at his passing.
“I am shocked and deeply saddened at Randy’s passing,” said Giles Malone, a friend, neighbor and colleague of O’Brien’s.
“We have lost a community leader and activist who cared deeply for Brevard County and its people. Randy was very passionate about the Space Coast and spent his career making an indelible mark on our community. There was only one Randy, and he will be greatly missed.”
Strong Opinions, ‘Brought Great Life To Meetings’
Bob Baugher, local hotel owner, Tourism leader and businessman was also saddened by the loss.
“Randy always let his strong opinions be known and brought great life to all the meetings we had,” said Baugher.
“He was his own person.”
Former Brevard County Commissioner, Roger Dobson, served with O”Brien on the Brevard County commission.
“Randy was a good commissioner who had a sense of the people,” said Dobson.
“He was a quick study, assertive and was re-elected which says a lot about what the people thought.”
O’Brien was the owner of ABBCO in Cape Canaveral, a highly successful manufacturer of equipment used to clean up oil spills.
He is survived by his wife Sharon O’Brien, his five children – Danny, Ted, Nick, Brad, and Jeff – and eight grandchildren.
O’Brien held a bachelor’s degrees in education, industrial arts and psychology from Newark State College and Kean University in Union, N.J.
He earned his educational credits from the University of Florida and Texas A&M University in chemistry, and from the Environmental Protection Agency regarding emergency oil spill response and chemical clean-up. He also received firefighter training from the Firefighters College in Ocala.
O’Brien was a former member of the Brevard County Tourist Development council for 11 years. He was also the former Home Owner’s Association President of Villa De Palmas, a member of the Elks Club, Moose Club and Ancient Order of the Hibernians. Randy served as a Brevard County Commissioner for eight years.
O’Brien recently ran for office to be a Port Canaveral Commissioner as his top priorities were to energetically fuel economic growth at Port Canaveral via industrial and tourist expansion. He said he chose to run for election because the Port was facing a challenging future that requires a person who can create strong partnerships with other governmental levels.
A memorial service, and Irish style Wake, is planned for 10:30am on June 16 at Divine Mercy Catholic Church on Merritt island.
Visit SpaceCoastDaily.com for further details.