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2.2 When and how did Randy Rhoads die?


This article is from the The Osbourne FAQ, by Mike L. with numerous contributions by others.

2.2 When and how did Randy Rhoads die?

In 1981, Ozzy divorced his first wife, Thelma. They were separated soon
after the day he came home (drunk) to find a bailiff at the door, and all
of his belongings outside. He was told that if he stepped inside the house
he would be arrested. Ozzy was not exactly what you would call a father
figure. He would leave home for days, weeks, at a time and stay at friends
places until they kicked him out. Rather than go through the divorce
proceedings, Ozzy told her to just keep everything. By now Ozzy and Sharon
had gotten to the point where they decided to get married. Sharon had been
hoping this would also get Ozzy a better deal since her father was the one
managing the recording and managerial contracts.

On March 19th, 1982 Ozzy and his band were on their way to Orlando, FL from
Knoxville, TN. The show was to feature Foreigner and UFO. Ozzy and Randy had
been talking about their recent success. Randy mentioned wanting to leave to
pursue a degree in classical guitar at UCLA. Ozzy has said that if Randy
were still alive, it is doubtful that Randy would still be playing with

During the trip, they stopped to do some repairs on the tour bus at
its base near Leesburg, Florida. The bus driver, Andrew Aycock (36)
invited some of the people for a ride in his Beechcraft Bonanza
airplane (9-10 am). The bus driver took Don Airey and Jake Duncan (the
tour manager) for a spin. Aycock had been involved in a previous
accident in which a young boy was killed.

When the plane landed, the driver went for another ride, this time
with Randy and Ozzy's seamstress, Rachael Youngblood, 58. The pilot of
the plane was presumably under the influence of cocaine (it was later
found in drug tests).

The pilot's ex-wife was standing outside the bus and it is assumed the pilot
dove the plane into the bus in an attempt to kill her. Aycock circled the
bus three times, and on the fourth pass, the plane clipped the tour bus and
careened into a nearby house where it exploded. Ozzy ran into the
house and pulled out a deaf man, who was unaware of the fire.

Rachel and Randy were both killed in the crash. The fire destroyed the home,
and adjacent garage.

Ozzy's new solo career had come to a screeching halt.

He would continue the tour in April with a quick shoe in of Bernie Torme.
Bernie used to play guitar for Gillan (Ian Gillan, who would join Sabbath).
Bernie would not stay with Ozzy long however. Bernie left Ozzy's band. The
reason is not known for sure. Some people say he was not used to playing big
gigs. What is known is that Bernie had a UK tour lined up for his 'Electric
Gypsies' album. His departure from Ozzy was bound to happen.

Brad Gillis left 'Night Ranger' to replace Torme for the remainder of the
tour. Brad Gillis also appeared on the 'Speak of the Devil' LP. After the
tour Ozzy would hire Jakey Lou Williams (Jake E. Lee) with whom he recorded
1984's 'Bark At The Moon' album. Gillis would later rejoin Night Ranger.
Brad may have wanted to stay on with Ozzy but Oz didn't really think the
two of them were compatible.

On Feb. 19, 1982, while visiting San Antonio,
Texas, Ozzy was again drunk after drinking a bottle of Courvoisier. Sharon
decided to lock his clothes in the hotel room so that Ozzy would not go
outside and cause trouble. To solve this problem, Ozzy dressed up in one of
Sharon's evening gowns. While taking some photos of himself in drag, he had
to urinate and did so on the historical Alamo building. The Alamo is the
1836 site of the legendary battle between the Texans and the Mexican army.

Ozzy was arrested and charged with defiling a national monument and banned
from playing in San Antonio any further. This would be another blow to his
image that would haunt him to this day. The ban was eventually lifted.

I received a piece of email from one of the officers who arrested Ozzy
at the Alamo. Contrary to the dress we was supposed to be wearing,
he says Ozzy was not in one. This is just one of the many contradictions
in this FAQ. Until they can be proven, they will remain.

Here is the e-mail I received (Thanks Sam):

"I am one of the officers who arrested Ozzy at the Alamo and to set the
record straight he was not wearing a womans clothes. He had on athletic
shoes with no socks, a T-shirt and a pair of sweatpants with no underwear.
He also had a pack of cigarrettes rolled up in one sleeve. He was wasted
and he never spoke. Billy actually arrested him and I
was driving the "wagon" that day. The wagon is a van outfitted for prisoner
transport. I was called to transport him from the Alamo to jail. The jail
was then
directly across from the S.A.P.D. and it now is the Wackenhut federal parole
violator jail. I've kicked myself several times since then for not having
kept copies
of the reports.

I know what he was wearing because I searched him for weapons and had very
close contact with him. Half way to the jail, which was only about a mile
away the dispatchers were already calling wanting to know who had him in
custody. By the time I dropped him off there was a long black stretch limo
waiting for him.

You might note for your records he was actually given a big break. He was
arrested and booked for public intoxication a class "C" misdemeanor which
carries a max $200.00 fine. The law that more appropriately applied was
"Desecration of a venerated Object" which covers among other things
"Shrines." The Alamo is considered a shrine.

You can post my info on your web page if you like. I think it would be cool
to hear from fans to answer their questions.

Check back later on the report. Send me the exact date again as I really do
not remember and I'll try to get it for you. "
(Where did you go Sam?)

Ozzy married his long time friend Sharon, on a Honolulu-Hawaii beach on
July 4, 1982.


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