Obituary: Thomas Eads Arnold Jr.
Thomas Eads Arnold Jr., 64 years of age, died at home in Prescott, Ariz., on Dec. 17, 2008. Born on June 29, 1944, Tom was the son of Thomas Eads Arnold and Jean Carson Arnold.
He is survived by his wife of 36 years, the Rev. Kimball Clark Arnold; daughter Anne Elizabeth (Betsy) Arnold; son Charles Clark Arnold; sister Anne Arnold Castle; and nephews, a niece and cousins. He was predeceased by his son Thomas Eads Arnold III (Tres).
Tom grew up in Phoenix and Iron Springs, Ariz., as part of a family with strong roots in the state. He graduated from West High School and attended the University of Arizona, where he was a brother in Phi Gamma Delta and a student of history and English. Tom enlisted in the United States Army in 1967 and served at the rank of Specialist in Korea, where he received the Army Commendation Medal for Meritorious Service and numerous additional decorations. After working in Prescott for one year, he returned to Phoenix as a leasing agent for Murdock Management, rising quickly to the position of president at the age of 31. In 1981, he began a long and successful series of executive positions at Del Webb, including president of Del Webb Realty and Management, chairman of Del Webb Commercial Properties and Construction Services, and ultimately president of Del Webb Corporation. During his tenure he oversaw development of Sun City and the initiation of Sun City West and Sun City Vistoso. In 1988 he founded Thomas E. Arnold and Associates LLC, through which he served as the federally appointed chairman, CEO, and president of American Continental Corporation, overseeing liquidation and creditor repayment. Over the ensuing years, Tom served as chairman of the board of trustees for Executive Life Insurance Company, CEO and president of Grossman's Inc., Chapter 11 trustee for Wilcare Corporation, and in numerous positions focused on corrective management of major corporate challenges. Always active in his community, Tom was chairman of the Phoenix Chamber of Commerce and the Central Phoenix Redevelopment Committee, president of the Arizona Coalition for Tomorrow, and a member of the board of directors of St. Luke's Medical Center, the YMCA, the Metropolitan Phoenix Boys' Club and the University of Arizona School of Business. In recent years, Tom founded and served as president of Granite Investment and Development LLC, best known for the master-planned Bright Star community of Chino Valley. Concurrently he founded and was chairman of Tri-City Investment and Development LLC and was responsible for one of the largest land acquisitions in the history of Yavapai County.
Throughout his life, Tom was loved and respected for his integrity, energy and vision. He always faced challenges squarely, including those of his long illness, and in all ways was an inspiration to those who knew him. He was proud and supportive of his family, and shared with us his love of gardening, baseball, card games, horse racing, history and our nation.
A reception of remembrance will be from 2 to 5 p.m. Monday, Dec. 22, 2008, at Arizona Ruffner Wakelin Funeral Home, 303 S. Cortez St., Prescott, AZ 86301, and a memorial service will be 11 a.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 23, at Trinity Cathedral, 100 W. Roosevelt St., Phoenix, Ariz. The family prefers memorial contributions be made in Tom's name to People Who Care, P.O. Box 12977, Prescott, AZ 86304, or to Trinity Cathedral, 100 W. Roosevelt St., Phoenix, AZ 85003.
You are invited to log onto www.ruffnerwakelin.com to sign Tom's guestbook and share a memory.
Information provided by survivors.