Obituary: HAROLD J. ARNOLD |


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April 18, 1931 – March 16, 2023

In Loving Memory of Harold John Arnold
We thank God for giving us this amazing man Harold John Arnold to know and love over the last 91 years. Harold entered Heaven’s gates on March 16, 2023.

Harold was born April 18, 1931 to John and Margaret (Huber) Arnold in rural McIntosh, SD. He was the oldest of five children. Harold grew up on the family ranch with his siblings Violet Geigle, Esther Mehl, Wesley Arnold and Gloria Lauinger. He went to country school and graduated from McIntosh High School in 1950. He was drafted into the US Army in 1952 serving his time in Germany. After an honorable discharge, Harold attended and graduated from South Dakota State University with an Agricultural Engineering degree, a minor in Mathematics and his pilot’s license.

While home for a weekend from college, Harold’s sister Gloria introduced him to her teacher friend, Lois Zimmer. Harold asked Lois to dance and he must have been impressed because the next weekend he rented a plane in Brookings and flew back to McIntosh to ask Lois for a date to a Morristown dance. Harold and Lois were married August 19, 1961. Harold found his forever dancing partner for the next 61 years.

It was always Harold’s plan to come back to the ranch he was raised on. In 1966, Harold and Lois, along with Wesley and Corrine Arnold formed Arnold Brothers Arrow Five Ranch. Harold was introduced to the Simmental breed of cattle while stationed in Germany. Arnold Brothers were one of the first cattle breeders to bring the Simmental breed to the United States.

Arnold Brothers raised and sold Simmental cattle for thirty-five years and became very well known in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. Their annual Bull Sale grew tremendously over the years and became a major event with bidders coming from all over the country. Harold’s family and Wes’s family were blessed with a great friendship over their ranching years.

Harold was always a very active community member. He served on the Soil Conservation Service Board, County Commissioner Board, SD State Simmental Board, Federal Land Bank Board, Corson County Fair Board, and was an active member of St. Bonaventure Parish.

Harold always said his greatest accomplishment was raising and being a father to four beautiful daughters. Later the boys came; four wonderful sons-in-law followed by thirteen loving grandchildren and seven great grandchildren. He never missed a major event and was a role model for a strong work ethic and love for God.

Harold retired in 2005 and started the next phase of his life. Traveling and collecting antique cars and tractors were his favorite hobbies. For a few years, Harold drove a 1926 Model-T Ford to high school. Later he restored the Model-T along with many other antique cars and tractors that originally belonged to the Arnold family. Harold also loved purchasing old cars and would often surprise Lois with a new find. Harold was proud to show off his car collection at parades and car tours with friends. He belonged to three car clubs, traveled to many states and made lifelong friends.

Harold and Lois loved to travel especially going on cruises. They traveled all over the United States as well as to Mexico, Canada, Europe, Russia, China, Ireland, Australia and more.

Beautiful memories will remain with his family and wife Lois of 61 years. His daughters Carleen (Leon) Mack of Watertown, SD; Beth (Kyle) Jensen of Mobridge, SD; Jennifer (Darrin) Thurston of Mound, MN; and Lisa (Todd) Jensen of Spearfish, SD. Grandchildren Cameron (Kelsi) Mack, Shawn (Alexis) Mack, Seth (Roni) Mack, Caleb and Noelle Mack, Dayton (Rylae) Jensen, Collin (Morgan) Jensen, David (Tyra) Jensen, Audra (Kyle) Hiltunen, Tess and Maya Thurston, Haley and Rachel Jensen. Great grandchildren Lane, Tyra, Logan and Emma Mack and Brooks, Brigg and Lincoln Jensen. Siblings Violet (Herb) Geigle, Esther Mehl, and Wes (Corrine) Arnold.

Harold will be joining his mother and father Margaret and John Arnold, sister Gloria Lauinger, and brothers-in-law Clint Mehl and Dick Lauinger in heaven.

On Harold’s 90th birthday we asked him “If you could do it all over again and be anything you wanted, what would you be?” He took a deep thoughtful moment of reflection and said, “I’d be a rancher.” Our hearts are full knowing he lived his best life.

We will be celebrating his wonderful life with a Sharing Memories Wake (no formal service) Friday, March 24th 4-6 pm Central Time at Kesling Funeral Home in Mobridge. The Funeral will be Saturday, March 25th 10:00 am Mountain Time in McIntosh at St. Bonaventure Catholic Church with lunch to immediately follow. Burial will be Monday, March 27th 9:30 am Mountain Time at Black Hills National Cemetery Sturgis, SD. In Lieu of flowers Harold would want donations to be made to McIntosh Ambulance, McIntosh Fire Department or St. Bonaventure Catholic Church in his honor.