MANATEE COUNTY, Fla. — Florida Strawberry Festival announcer Randy Scott, his wife Jill, and Jill’s sister, Judy Cook, have died in a crash in Parrish on Monday, officials with the festival confirmed.
Florida Highway Patrol officials said that the crash happened between a dump truck and an SUV on County Road 675. Three occupants in the SUV were pronounced deceased on the scene, and the driver of the dump truck was transported to Manatee Memorial Hospital, officials said. The crash remains under investigation.
“They’re deeply engrained in the Strawberry Festival and our community,” said Festival President Kyle Robinson. “We call them the Strawberry Festival family but the festival is part of their family.”
Judy volunteered with Randy and Jill each at year at the festival.
"This family needs your prayers," Robinson said. "This family is struggling in not only a tragic loss but a unforeseen and abrupt loss."
Condolences have been pouring in online, with many detailing their experiences with the family while at the festival.
Robinson said they will be missed but never replaced. He said recordings of Randy singing will be used at future events.
Officials with the Florida Strawberry Festival released the following statement on Tuesday:
"We were filled with great sorrow yesterday when we heard the heartbreaking news of the passing of our dear friends, Randy and Jill Scott, and Jill’s sister, Judy Cook. As the voice of the Festival, Mr. Randy’s dedication to our 11-day event was immeasurable. From singing the National Anthem each morning to serenading us with Happy Trails each night, Mr. Randy’s song will forever be missed. He was a beloved employee of the Festival, where his time and talents were always put to great use. Everyone’s admiration for Mr. Randy started with just him -- his sweet demeanor, steadfast spirit, quiet confidence, and genuine concern for others. Mrs. Jill was the jewel of Mr. Randy’s eye. If you could catch a glimpse of her, she would often be seen working fervently behind the scenes to help support her family. Her willingness to serve others and desire to show appreciation for others set her apart from the rest. The Scotts were true servants whose reach extended far behind the Festival grounds. Their presence will be greatly missed within our community. Please join us as we extend our deepest sympathy to their family, friends, and the Cook family."