Date of Death:  September 20, 2021

Service Details

A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, October 9, 2021 at 11:00 a.m., at First Presbyterian Church Three Rivers/Centreville, 320 N. Main St., Three Rivers, MI.

The service will be available on Zoom at the following link:

Meeting ID: 898 0650 7455

Passcode: 484840

Obituary Notice

Randall R. Painter passed away on September 20, 2021, at his home in Gilbert, Arizona. Randall was born on September 22, 1929 in Mineola, NY to Chester and Edith Randall Painter, and over the years has called many different places “home,” the most significant being Three Rivers, MI.

When Randall was a freshman at Lafayette College in 1947, he decided that he wanted to go into the ministry. His decision was based on his deep desire to be of service to others, and for his life to make a difference to the world and to other people. Randall’s life indeed reflects the fulfillment of his goals.

Randall’s journey in ministry began in 1951, with his enrolment at Princeton Theological Seminary. His first call to ministry, while still in Seminary, was at Laurel Lake Presbyterian Church in PA, in the summer of 1953. Though he fainted during his sermon on a hot summer Sunday, he got up and finished that sermon, and many more to come. During his career, Randall served congregations at the Brick Church in NYC; Bronxville Reformed Church, NY; Northminster Presbyterian Church, Endwell, NY; Oak Park/River Forest, IL; Presbyterian Church of Three Rivers/Centreville, MI; John Knox Presbyterian Church, Grand Rapids, MI; and Presbyterian Church of Birmingham, MI. During his career, Randall also served as moderator of the Presbytery and head of the Committee on Ministry, and was quite involved on boards of various community organizations, resulting in the Three Rivers Lions Club naming him Citizen of the Year in 1978. Amidst all of that, he still found time to earn his Masters Degree in Guidance and Counseling at Western Michigan University, and to teach Philosophy at Glen Oaks Community College.

Randall retired from the ministry in 1995, but he did not retire from service to the community, support of the Church and Presbytery, or having fun and pursuing his interests. Randall had a deep love of music, and retirement allowed him time to dust off his clarinet and play again. Randall enjoyed playing with the Otsego Community Band, Kalamazoo Symphony Band, Gray’s Community Band, Three Rivers German Band, and Sturgis Wind Symphony. He also loved singing in the choir and playing in the bell choir at the church in Three Rivers.

Throughout his journey in ministry, and beyond, Randall was accompanied by “the breath of my life,” his wife, Paula. Randall and Paula were married on August 23, 1952, and were an inseparable team through all of their life adventures.

Randall is survived by his wife of 69 years, Paula Painter; son John (Patricia) Painter; son Donald (Debby) Painter; grandchildren Kimberly Painter (Alex) Evrard, Jeffrey (Jessi) Painter, and Erik (Kat) Gincig; great grandchildren Desmond, Amelia and Tobias; and several nieces and nephews. Randall was preceded in death by his parents and his brother, Chester Painter.

It is with the deepest love we say, well done, good and faithful servant.

Additional Information
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  1. My sympathies go out to all his family ,
    I went to school for years with his son Don, and lived across the street from his home in Pine Street . I remember him as always being very kind to me as a child .
    May our Lord give him peace . . . 🕊️

  2. I was very lucky to be involved with the Three Rivers Presbyterian Church as a youth: from singing the Jr. Choir, participating in Communicants Class and becoming a member of the Presbyterian Church, going to his family cottage in the Catskills and the Sr. Bell Choir when we toured both Washington D.C and Boston. Our family’s were very close and he allowed us to moor a MC sailboat at his cottage at Corey Lake.

    I have so many fond memories of Randy. He was a teacher, preacher and a friend. I offer my best wishes to Paula, John, Donald and their families. He will be missed and will never be forgotten.

  3. Bill and I are sorry for your loss John, Patti, Kim, Jeff, Paula, and all of the Painters. Randall was the kindest man and we have fond memories of lovely conversations over breakfast when visiting John and Patti over the holidays. Sending our love to all of you.

  4. I have so many happy and wonderful memories of Uncle Randy, my father’s brother. I have pictures of when he baptized me as a toddler. He performed wedding ceremonies for my siblings. So many joys staying at the family cabin in the Catskills and hiking and on his sailboat at the lake. Putting puzzles together. Hearing him preach. I know that he is now with our Lord and Saviour. Amen.

  5. Many fond memories of Rev Painter. He did my high school baccalaureate with me in 1978. I will always remember his guidance in speaking in front if the hugh crowd. He made me feel at ease and blessed to share the word of the Lord. May he rest in peace. Thank you for your service to our community!!
    Brenda Keasey Pearrow
    Centreville, MI

  6. My deepest sympathy to the family. I have such fond memories of Randy from his times at the First Presbyterian Church in Three Rivers, especially the family camps and his interactions with us when we were in the Bell Choir. I am so glad he was a part of my childhood.

  7. Very sincere condolences from Nina Daly and her daughter Ann Daly Greene. The senior citizen group at John Knox had many adventures with Randy and Paula. We both have a lot of wonderful memories from your time at John Knox.

    • Your Randall cousins mourn your passing and send our love to Paula and the rest of our cousins. Merritt and Cynthia have fond memories of our childhood on Long Island and I was so very glad to see you and Paula when you came to Virginia. I solved the mystery of the origin of your middle name and you reminded of the need for faith and family. Fair trade, I’d say.

  8. What a devastating loss. Randy baptized our whole family. I am so sorry for your loss. May Gods loving hand help heal your sorrow and touch your heart with the peace only He can. My family is praying for Paula and the Painter family. Fair winds and following seas Randy.

  9. Randy was a genuinely good soul, who truly cared about giving back to others. The world will forever be a better place, for having had him in it. I am truly sorry for your loss.

  10. I am so sad to read about the passing of Randy. As a child I loved listening to his services in church. We often visited the cottage and went for boat rides, the cottage later became my first home with my husband. Randy was my Fathers best friend and it was great to watch them laugh together. He will be missed on Earth but I know he’s having a great time in Heaven once again laughing with my Dad. It was an honor and joy to know Randy, he was an inspiration to everyone who was blessed to meet and know him.

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