Arthur Foote Gardiner
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August 13, 1948 -
June 18, 2014
Arthur enjoyed his family, nature, insects, history, music, coins, reptiles, birds, his cat, learning, gardening, fishing, walking, reading, laughing, thinking, watching movies, helping people, repairing anything, and working.
A 1978 graduate of California State University, Fullerton (Chemistry), he prepared & supervised undergraduate student experiments in analytical & physical chemistry. For Borax, he did analytical & chemistry tests on core & stream samples of commercial metals. At Vetter Research (1980-1993), he analyzed samples of gases, liquids, solids, & radioactive materials from oil, geothermal & environmental companies as a senior chemist. In the 1960s, he briefly worked on a salmon fishing boat out of Noyo Harbor.
Born a 5th generation Californian, he lived in Reno from 1961-1967 and returned in 1994. He worked 10 years for P. & S. Hardware and 10 years at an AM/PM. He helped people with projects: plumbing, home & garden, children's science fair entries, Halloween & Burning Man costumes, tutored fellow employees to pass U.S. Citizenship tests and gave their children books to learn English. At AM/PM, he constantly repaired the bathroom, gas pumps, computers and more to help his bosses with maintenance. He helped his landlady with garden & home and with emergencies caused by tenants.
Arthur's library of books covered nearly every topic known to humankind; all things interested & educated him. When he died, his rooms were waist high in boxes full of projects and items to repair (including radios, lamps, TVs), and the tools to do the jobs. He had no vacation in 20 years, collected only two months of his social security, yet retained a sense of humor: he wanted "a Foote-stone not a headstone" "with insects as pallbearers."
His friend Jerry said, "I admired him. He had a strong heart, and he loved people."
Quiet and a loner by nature, Arthur, at heart a teacher, shared knowledge by using examples understandable to the listener. He could focus & figure out in detail how things worked, could illustrate by drawings as well as with words, was a dear & sensitive man, knew how to bear pain and not complain (he survived polio at age 4), and was funny in the sweetest ways. He cooked perfect artichokes (with points trimmed) and lemon meringue pies, and liked to take his Mr. Potato Head with him on road trips. He spent his last week re-reading the 1911 edition of The Encyclopedia Britannica for which his namesake had written a mining article.
His cousin Pat wrote that Arthur was "unique," "erudite," "witty," "charming in a comfortable & understanding way, and inexplicably modest."
"Flowers" was one of Arthur's first words; The memorial service will no longer be August 9, 2014, you are welcome to send him off with a bloom on Saturday, October 25, 2014 at 11 a.m. at the Foote Family Plot c/o Greenwood Cemetery, 459 Hollow Way, Nevada City, California, 85959.
Arthur was preceded in death by his parents, Evelyn and Jim, brother, Bob, and sister Janet. He is survived by his cat, siblings Katharine, John, and Ann, and nieces Nikki and Sierra.
Arthur's family thanks Lois of Reno Cancer Foundation, all at Reno Radiation & Hospice, Greg at Walton's, and Kay at Greenwood.
Donations may be made in Arthur's name to the Reno Cancer Foundation, Attn. Lois Bynum, 1155 Mill St., Reno, NV 89502. 100% of your donation goes to patients and stays local.
Walton's Sparks Funeral Home
1745 Sullivan Lane
Sparks, NV 89431
Published in Reno Gazette-Journal on June 29, 2014