"I hate going to grandma and grandpa's! Whenever we take pictures, they always say, 'Okay, okay, now one with just the twins.'" Randall Pearson, Pilgrim Rick
Randall Kenneth Pearson is Weather Trader in New York, an occupation which he admits is hard to explain. He's currently raising two young daughters with wife Beth and has an estranged father, William. He is the adoptive son of Rebecca and Jack and the adoptive brother of Kate and Kevin.
Randall's biological parents met on a bus route in the 1970s. While initially a poet, his father's writing declined as the couple became entangled in drugs. Randall was anonymously left on Fire Station Number 19's steps by his heroin-addicted biological father following his biological mother's death, presumably during childbirth. He was brought to a hospital nursery by a fireman, who met Jack Pearson at the viewing window, his own babies in the basinets right next to Randall.
Reeling from the loss of their third triplet, Jack and Rebecca adopt Randall from the hospital. Initially named Kyle, Rebecca renamed him Randall to give him a connection to his biological parents' favorite poet.
Throughout his childhood, Randall kept a running tally of black people he met. He secretly wondered if one of the men was his own biological father. He kept this a painful secret as he loved and respected his adopted father.
Randall struggles with insomnia and a compulsion to be perfect. He has known his wife, Beth for 17 years (met around 19). They purchased their home just prior to his promotion to partner in his firm.
He is portrayed by Sterling K. Brown
In the series premiere, Randall manages to track down his biological father, William. He is living in a rundown apartment and now a recovering addict. While Randall attempts to only state his feelings and share that he is successful despite the man's best attempts, he finds himself wanting to introduce the man to his grandchildren.
William stays extensively with the family in one of the daughter's rooms, much to Beth's dismay. She relents upon learning that he has stage four cancer. Randall attempts to get William more sophisticated medical care but learns that only experimental treatments remain to extend William's life by a matter of months.
William is introduced as a work friend, but later Randall admits to his children that he is, in fact, their biological grandfather.
Randall shares a closer bond with his adopted sister, Kate. His brother, Kevin, often was pressured by his peers to call him "Webster" after a television character who was adopted by a white family.
- Randall was born on the same day as Kevin and Kate, August 31, 1980. However, in Career Days, Randall's report card says that he was born on June 27, 1981.
"No hard feelings, man. I walk out of here in triumph. I came, I saw, I conquered."
- Randall Pearson ( What Now?)
"My father died, man, and on the day of his memorial you sent me pears, which I'm allergic to. And you know this because at the lunch when you hired me we at Roquefort salad and I went into anaphylactic shock. And along with the pears that could have killed me, you sent a card with a one-line Hallmark message and a typed out signature, from "The Team." And for all this, Tyler, I thank you."
- Randall Pearson ( What Now?)