Randy was born on September 30, 1944, in Perham, MN, the son of the late Gordon and Lenora (Mistelske) Chaffee. In the mid 1950’s the family moved to Crookston, MN, when his father got a job at the newly opened American Crystal Sugar Company. Randy graduated from Crookston Central High School and afterwards followed in his father’s footsteps by working for American Crystal Sugar his entire career. He worked at the plants in Crookston, East Grand Forks, and Moorhead, MN, starting as a sugar loader and then progressed to being an electrician, foreman, and finally retiring as a supervisor in 2001. On December 22, 1966, Randy eloped with Carol Johnson, and they were married in Sisseton, SD. They made their home primarily in Crookston and Climax but also lived in Moorhead and Bemidji, MN at different times. They were blessed with four children, Tana, David, Jonathon, and Brad. In their free time, Randy and Carol were avid golfers. Randy also enjoyed gardening, planting trees and flowers, building and putting up birdhouses, and was passionate about genealogy. Most of all, Randy was a proud and dedicated husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather. He will always be remembered for the love and care he gave to his family and his strong faith in God.
Randy is survived by his beloved wife of 55 years, Carol of Crookston, MN; children, David (Susan) Chaffee of Crookston, MN, Tana (Warren) Kalnbach of Big Lake, MN, Jonathon (Stella) Chaffee of Edina, MN, and Brad (Brandy) Chaffee of Fisher, MN; 9 grandchildren, Adrian (Lilly), Alexander and Zachary Chaffee, Brett, Logan and Caleb Kalnbach, Ryan and Chloe Chaffee, and Devin (Elena) Berger; 8 great-grandchildren, Skylar, Layla, Emma, Peyton, Ella, Evelyn, Beckham, and Apollo; brother, Mark (Jean) Chaffee of Fargo, ND; sister, Marjrae (Leslie) Molskness of Stillwater, MN; brothers-in-law, Jimmy (Marlys) Johnson, Darrell (Peggy) Johnson, and Bobby (Joyce) Johnson, all of Crookston, MN; sister-in-law, Joyce Johnson of Prior Lake, MN; and brother-in-law, Dennis (Jewel) Tweeten of Lady Lake, FL; as well as many nieces, nephews, cousins, and friends. He was preceded in death by his parents, Gordon and Lenora Chaffee; father and mother-in-law, Charles and Mamie Johnson; sister-in-law, Sonja Tweeten; brothers-in-law, Carl and Don Johnson; niece, Konnie Chaffee; and nephew, John Johnson.
A memorial service celebrating Randy’s life will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, July 31, 2021, at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Crookston, MN, with Pastor Jeff Brown officiating. A time of visitation will be one hour before the service as well as from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. on Friday, July 30, 2021, at Stenshoel-Houske Funeral Home in Crookston, MN, with no prayer service Friday evening. Inurnment will be immediately following the service at Oakdale Cemetery in Crookston, MN.