Doug Ernst Staff Writer
A motorcycle crash has claimed the life of MDI director Randall (Randy) Listman, who died in a Santa Rosa hospital on October 19. He was 64.
Mr. Listman was known by men in his Northern California community as a gentle giant; by his wife as an intimate and sensual man; and by his children as an affectionate and loving human being.
Randy also had a wild side, a love of motorcycles that resulted in more than one crash. He embraced an intense love of people, was helpful to many, and compassionate and affectionate to all.
Above all, he was committed to his wife, Claudia, his two daughters and two grandsons. He was a happy man, able to fully express his emotions safely, thanks to the lessons he learned – and taught – as a longtime member of MDI.
Randy left MDI once, for a few years, and came back more dedicated than before. Thereafter, he warned MDI men not to give in to the temptation to trade responsibilities in the organization for freedom. He said it was a mistake because he lost his peace of mind, which comes from doing men’s work.
When working with men he was genuinely curious about their opinions, so that he could counsel them at their level. By taking time to fully understand where a man was coming from, Randy gave feedback that truly resonated with the man he was serving.
He felt responsible for the success of MDI; that’s why he agreed to lead – at virtually every level of the organization – as a director, a Western Region leader, a Sequoia Division Coordinator, a leader of teams and perhaps most importantly, a counselor for individuals. He took calls from men at all hours of the day and night and was enthusiastic with the advice he gave.
Randy was a tolerant man, yet he was also courageous. He knew when to take a stand for doing the right thing. He was honest about his beliefs. He could be trusted to tell his truth.
He was spiritual and at peace with himself. Although he was always in pain due to physical problems, he was proud to deal with his ailments and limitations by himself, although he accepted a little help from time to time from his many friends who admired his determination.
He was vulnerable, yet one of the toughest men his friends had ever known.
About two weeks before he died, a candlelight vigil was held in Santa Rosa, near the hospital where he was being treated. The ceremony attracted men from all over Northern California who wanted to express love for the man and hope for his recovery.
Some of the men hadn’t seen each other for quite some time, and it seemed to some of them that Randy had brought them all together to remind each other about how men serve each other.
During a bedside ceremony shortly before he died, men who knew Randy thanked him for the many lessons he taught – about fidelity, health, the value of men’s work and community service, the virtues of willpower and the positive side of virtually any man or situation.
A lifelong San Francisco Giants fan, Randy was also told that the Los Angeles Dodgers lost a playoff game that night.
He was also told about the wonderful things men said about him at the candlelight ceremony, in front of his family. The nurse on duty asked the men to not ask Randy questions, because – although she said he could hear the men, he could become frustrated by not being able to answer them.
As the men made their way out of the hospital room, one man said he noticed a tear coming from one of Randy’s eyes.
Good night, sweet Randall.
FOOTNOTE: If you wish to help ease the financial burden, Randy’s family would appreciate it if you please clicked the following link to make a donation: