Joseph R. "Papa Joe" Arnold, 79, of Sandusky, passed away late Sunday afternoon, Jan. 4, 2009, in Firelands Regional Medical Center, Main Campus, Sandusky, after a brief illness.
He was born May 1, 1929, in Sandusky, and was a 1948 graduate of St. Mary High School. He will be remembered as a loving father, grandfather, brother, friend and neighbor throughout the area. Joe worked for nearly 40 years at J.C. Penney Co. before retiring. He was a lifelong local musician for more than 50 years. For many years, he was the drum teacher at Hayes Avenue Music Store, but was well known as the drummer in the Ange Damante Trio for more than 50 years. In 1948, he was the Ohio State champion in a drum contestin Cleveland, and was a dedicatedNotre Dame fan. Joe and hisbuddies were shuffleboardchampions for many years during the '40s and '50s for Ray's Radio Inn.
He was a member of St. Mary's Catholic Church, Sandusky Eagles Aerie 444, Musician Union 573, and was a volunteer for Meals on Wheels since 1993.
He is survived by his family, John (Ann Marie) Arnold and Lori Arnold of Sandusky, Randy (Candy) Arnold of Pratt, Kan., and Melanie (Tim) Skelton ofSandusky; six grandchildren, Leah, Michael, Nathan, Joey, Devan and Lee; sister, Millie Henry of Sandusky; nephews, Mick, Don, David, Chris and Pat; nieces, Cindy and Maria; the Potts family of Mansfield, Ohio, and formerlySandusky.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Joseph Lawrence and Leola Catherine (Hanley) Arnold; sister, Rita Arnold (1970); lifelong friends, Angelo "Ange" Damante, Frank Ackerman and Bonnie Schwerer.
Visitation will be 2-8 p.m. today at David F. Koch Funeral Home,520 Columbus Ave., Sandusky, where prayers will be recited at9:30 a.m. Thursday followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at10 a.m. at St. Mary's CatholicChurch, 429 Central Ave.,Sandusky. The Rev. Philip Feltman will officiate. Burial will be inCalvary Cemetery, Sandusky.
Contributions may be made to St. Mary's Catholic Church,429 Central Ave., Sandusky, OH 44870 or to the Humane Society of Erie County, 1911 Superior St.,Sandusky, OH 44870.