Dr. Randolph “Ranny” Umberger, Jr. died Friday, October 21, 2011, at Duke Medical Center. A long-time resident of Chapel Hill, Ranny was born in Christianburg, VA to Buena Denny Umberger and the late Wallace R. Umberger, Sr.
He is a retired Senior Professor of Theatre at North Carolina Central University, where he chaired the department for seven years and taught for forty. Ranny has a B.A. from UNC-Chapel Hill in Dramatic Art, English and British History; an M.A. from UNC-CH in Dramatic Art; and a Ph.D. from Tulane University in Theatre Literature and Criticism.
In 1998, he co-founded with Benjamin Keaton, Long Leaf Opera, a professional opera company dedicated to the production of opera written originally in English.
Ranny was an active member of St. Philip’s Episcopal Church in downtown Durham.
He is survived by his mother, Buena Umberger of Wytheville, VA; his life mate, Benjamin F. Keaton of Chapel Hill, NC; his sister, Sharon Minetree and husband, Charles, of Baltimore, MD; and three nephews, Richard, Christopher and Joshua.
A Requiem Eucharist will be celebrated at 6:00 PM Tuesday, November 1, 2011 from St. Philip’s Episcopal Church with the Reverend M. Jonah Kendall presiding.
A reception will follow in the Parish Hall.
In lieu of flowers, contributions in Ranny’s memory may be made to Long Leaf Opera, P.O. Box 2683, Chapel Hill, NC 27515.
On-line memorials: www.hallwynne.com. Select obituaries.
Arrangements for the Umberger family are under the care of Hall-Wynne Funeral Service in Durham.