Phil B. Arnold, age 86, went to his heavenly home February 9, 2021. He was born December 27, 1934 in Oklahoma City to Lola D. and Charles M. Arnold. Phil was the second born of three children. He has an older sister, Annette, and a younger brother, Mike. Phil was an amazing father and grandfather, loving husband, and devoted son and brother.
He married Helen Jean Verone (Petey) Pederson on February 3, 1956 at McGuire Air Force Base in New Jersey. He and Helen were both serving their country as members of the United States Air Force. She preceded him in death on June 23, 2008. They had three children (all girls) Kathy, Karen, and Kim.
Phil joined the Air Force even before he graduated high school. His sister walked for him at his high school graduation and received his diploma from Southeast High School in Oklahoma City in 1955. Phil spent several years in the Air Force serving his country, followed by many years in the Air Force Reserves. He saw the world through his military career, and he enjoyed ever minute of it. Every assignment was an adventure. Following his military career, he worked civil service in the flight simulator section at Tinker AFB and then at Altus AFB. Always involved in the military end of things, he later worked for Burtek, Inc. and Flight Safety dealing with military contracts. He retired in 2000. He always said he was “really good” at retirement, and as with every aspect of life, he enjoyed his retirement too. Throughout his life, Phil was not one to sit still. He enjoyed kayaking, boating, fishing, his cabin, his RV, and particularly motorcycles (all shapes, size, makes, and models). He owned and rode motorcycles from his teen years up through 85 years of age. He made many lifelong friends through this favorite hobby, many of which are thought of as family.
Throughout his life, Phil’s service to the Lord was by far his most important calling. He was ordained as a Baptist preacher at the age of 16. He preached, and pastored, periodically through his life. Phil loved his Lord; and is rejoicing with him now. Phil was such a student of the Bible and religion; we can only imagine how excited he is to be with his Lord.
Preceding Phil in death were his wife, Helen; his mother, Lola; his father, Charles; and his daughter, Kim.
Phil is survived by two daughters, Kathy (Geary) McDowell of Lawton, OK and Karen Arnold of Broken Arrow, OK; three granddaughters, Michele and Dayna McDowell of Lawton OK and Brittany (Craig) Harms of Coweta, OK. He is also survived by his sister, Annette of Jacksonville, FL and brother, Mike Arnold of Tulsa OK, and a small extended family. Throughout his life, Phil met and mentored so many young people, many of which we consider family. Phil will be missed by all, but we are certain everyone is elated for him to be at home with his Savior.
Visitation will be from 6:00 – 8:00 PM on Thursday, February 18, 2021 at Brown Funeral Home in Broken Arrow, OK. Graveside services celebrating Phil’s life will be at 2:00 PM on Friday, February 19, 2021 at Fort Gibson National Cemetery in Fort Gibson, Oklahoma with Joe Hobbs officiating.
Family and friends may share memories online at www.brokenarrowfuneralandcremation.com. The family of Phil B. Arnold entrusted his care and services to Brown Funeral Home & Cremations, 231 E. Commercial St., Broken Arrow, OK 74012, 918-251-5331.
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