Born: March 18, 1923
Death: July 26, 2012
March 18, 1923 - July 26, 2012
Bill Douglas Arnold, age 89, died peacefully at his home in Davis on July 26, 2012. He is survived by his wife of 70 years, Nanele Arnold; his daughter, Pamela Arnold Bair and her husband Steven; and his son, Bill Douglas Arnold Jr. Bill is also survived by his six grandchildren, Tom Muller (his wife, Michelle), Bill Muller (his wife, Julie), Cary Arnold (her husband, Jon Sanchez), Cameron Jenness (her husband, Rich), Bret Bair (his wife, Karen) and Will Arnold.
He also has 17 great-grandchildren, Blake Muller, Matthew Muller, Megan Muller, Amanda Muller, Brittani Muller, Molly Muller, Charles Muller, Katie Muller, Marlon Bair, Vivian Bair, Jordan Murray, Carson Murray, Noah Murray, Paige Jenness, Mark Ling (his wife, Jennifer), Spencer Ling and Logan Sanchez. A great-grandson is due in December. All of the family resides in the Davis area.
Bill was preceded in death by his parents, Lillian and Horace D. Arnold; his brother, Horace E. Arnold; and his sister, Eleanor Hendrickson.
Bill was born in Sacramento on March 18, 1923. His father was one of the owners of Arnold Brothers Inc., the first automobile dealership in Sacramento. Their dealership opened in 1906 and was at 1315 J St., selling the Pope-Tribune and White Steamer cars, and later, Hudson and Essex automobiles. The dealership was moved to 1210 J St. and, in 1925, Billís father and uncle built their own building on 18th and Capitol Avenue, which is the current location of the Zocalo Restaurant. The name Arnold Brothers, Inc., Motor Cars, is still inscribed over the front doors. The family later owned and operated Arnoldís Furniture Store at 1200 J St. from 1939 to 1958.
Bill graduated from Sacramento High School in June 1941. He was active in the ROTC program and reached the rank of major by his graduation. He married his high school sweetheart, Nanele Brown, on Oct. 27, 1941. Bill served in the U.S. Army during World War II and was stationed at McClellan Air Force Base for most of the war.
After the war, Bill managed the familyís furniture store and was elected a director of the Retail Furniture Association. In 1955, Bill purchased the Pontiac dealership in Davis and he later sold Nash Ramblers and International Trucks as well as Pontiacs. Bill was president of the Davis Chamber of Commerce in 1958, and enjoyed seeing both his son, Doug Arnold, and his granddaughter, Cary Arnold, later elected as president of the Davis Chamber of Commerce.
After several years and a brief illness, Bill sold the car dealership and later opened Arnold Real Estate. This company, now Coldwell Banker Doug Arnold Real Estate, is celebrating its 40th year in the real estate business in Yolo County, with offices in both Davis and Woodland. Bill was a member of the Davis Rotary Club and was president of the Yolo County Association of Realtors.
Bill was devoted to his family and he and his wife frequently traveled all over the world with family members. Family cruises were a highlight and he and his family took their first cruise to Hawaii in 1958. They last cruised to Mexico with 40 family members for Thanksgiving in 2009. In between, there were numerous trips to Europe, Hong Kong, Mexico, Canada and through the Panama Canal. Bill also liked long car trips and drove the family to many locations throughout the West.
Bill had a great love for his dogs and owned several Great Danes. His other major hobby was model trains and he had a large collection of trains and train memorabilia.
A funeral service for Bill is scheduled for Thursday, Aug. 2, 2012, at the Davis Community Church, 412 C St., Davis, at 10 a.m. Burial will follow the service in the Davis Cemetery, 820 Pole Line Road. In lieu of flowers, contributions to the SPCA or to the donorís favorite charity would be appreciated.
Friday August 3, 2012, 10 :00 AM
Davis Community Church