Marion Inez (Robie) Arnold
1945 - 2018
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Marion Inez (Robie) Arnold

Marion Inez (Robie) Arnold, age 72, of Newcastle, California passed away peacefully in the early hours of Friday, June 15, 2018. Marion was a noted horsewoman and pioneer in the sport of endurance riding.
Services will be held at Chapel of the Hills in Auburn on Saturday, June 23, 2018, at 10 a.m. Burial, with military honors, will immediately follow at the New Auburn Cemetery. Visitation will take place just before the services at Chapel of the Hills.
Marion was born on August 8, 1945 to John and Elizabeth (Kangas) Robie in Sacramento.
Marion is survived by her loving son, Wendell C. Arnold of Newark, Calif, her beloved grandchildren Emma, Lilla, and Samuel Arnold, her devoted sisters Wendy Robie of Chicago, and Marcie Chester of Lithia, Fla, her loving nephew Xo Larimer of Berkeley, Calif, cousin Suann Stone of Tahoe, Calif, and many lifelong friends.
Inspired by her grandfather, Wendell T. Robie, Marion learned to ride before she could walk. Arabian horses, trail riding and endurance racing became her life's passions. In 1958, at the age of 12, Marion finished the (now) historic 100-Miles-One-Day Western States Trail Ride (colloquially called the Tevis Cup) that was founded by her grandfather. She would go on to finish the ride 10 more times, winning in 1969. Her eleventh and final completion was in 1994 with her son. Shortly after her final Western States Trail Ride, she transitioned to NATRC where she rode and worked tirelessly. She will especially be remembered for a NATRC event that she co-chaired out of Robie Park in Truckee. She was one of the founding members of the American Endurance Ride Conference (AERC) and was elected to their Hall of Fame in 1982. She was also a founding member, and former president, of the Wendell and Inez Robie Foundation.
After graduating from Placer High School, class of 1963, as a National Merit Scholar, Marion attended Wellesley College and California State University Hayward, graduating with a major in mathematics, teaching math shortly thereafter. Marion enlisted in the U.S. Air Force during the Vietnam War and cared for newborns at the base hospital at Travis Air Force Base.
Marion's family is very proud of her military service. But it was in promoting and celebrating endurance riding and conserving the historic emigrant trails of the High Sierra mountains where she made her mark. Marion will be sorely missed by all who love the mountains and who know we love them best from atop a horse.

To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published in Auburn Journal on Jun. 21, 2018.
No memorial events are currently scheduled. To offer your sympathy during this difficult time, you can now have memorial trees planted in a National Forest in memory of your loved one.
Memories & Condolences
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19 entries
June 28, 2018
My deepest condolences to the family. May God comfort your hearts and strengthen you all during this most difficult time. -2 Thessalonians 2:16,17
June 27, 2018
May the God of all comfort grant you peace at this difficult time.
June 26, 2018
What an awesome woman. May our Heavenly Father carry and support you during this sad time.- Ps.94:19
June 23, 2018
Spent many hours riding the canyon with Marion in the early 6o's. Raced across the railroad bridge, neither one would back off, we both had horses we could trust and did not want to be called chicken. We had a lot of good times riding.
June 23, 2018
I hope that Marion, in her new journey, finds plenty of horses which love an open trail as much as she does.
Julie Suhr
June 23, 2018
Marion was there for me through a very difficult time in my life. When I felt alone in fighting for something that was important to both of us, she backed me up and stood beside me. I had felt betrayed by some people that I thought were my friends and I remember her saying that she was so sorry, but that they had "gone to the Dark Side." That made me laugh. I will never forget the lengths that she went for me then. She was tough and gruff at times, but would be so kind and supportive when the rubber met the road. I learned a lot about riding from her. I was honored when she offered to crew me in endurance. She also asked me to help her preserve and document her Grandfather's slides before they aged and were lost forever. We spent countless hours going through each one of over 500 pictures and naming dates, places, and names. She had recently had a stroke and it was not easy for her. And even then, as she'd look at each picture, she wanted to get on her mare and ride with me to those places as soon as she got better. Full of determination and grit, her grandfather lived on in her. She had a great sense of humor when I least expected it, but mostly I will remember her as being kind to me and her passion for preserving the trails and their history. I will miss hearing her voice on the phone that genuinely seemed happy to hear from me, even if we'd just spoken the day before, "Oh hi Dawn!". I will cherish her advice and friendship.
Dawn Kerr
June 23, 2018
My condolence goes to you and your family."Throw you burden on God because he cares for you."
June 22, 2018
When I rode with Marion, I was ready to quit after about 10 miles. She was just getting started. I truly appreciate that she protected many of the trails we still enjoy in the region. Truly a loss in the endurance community. Ride on Marion!
Lorna Dobrovolny
June 21, 2018
Oh Marion we are so going to miss you. We Didn't talk much since you moved to the Bay Area but I thought of you often. Between our many goat, horse and riding adventures I do have some fun and wonderful memories. Go with God, thinking of you and your family.
Rho Bailey
June 21, 2018
Marion made significant strides in many nontraditional areas for women of her day. For that we will always be grateful. Ride on, Marion.
Pam & Chuck Stalley
June 21, 2018
We AERC members salute the memory of Marion (Robie) Arnold, the youngest person to complete the 100-mile Tevis Cup at age 12. She was inducted into the Hall of Fame of the American Endurance Ride Conference. We are proud to have known her and cherish her memory.
Robert Sydnor
June 21, 2018
My condolences to all of her loved ones. I remember how she felt her life was complete after she won the Tevis, but she went on to do much more. I will miss her.
Barbara White
June 21, 2018
Happy Trails, Marion. You had so much influence on me when I was a young teenager. During the summers that I would visit my Aunt Ina, Marcy and I would go riding and you were always around to give sage advice! You and Marcy were so much a part of my life back then, along with Ina. I have wonderful memories of you and your family.
Judy Lemke
June 21, 2018
I met Marion in the late 60s when I worked for Arabian Horse World. She made it possible for me to ride one of Pat Fitzgerald's horses in the Virginia City ride. Will miss you Marion, trot on...trot on.
Dolores McKendry
June 21, 2018
buck swesey sorry marcy and family i worked at auburn lumber company went to school with you marcy
June 20, 2018
I met Marion through our mutual friend, Marilyn Hunter, when I moved to Auburn from Chicago in 1989. She raised and trained beautiful and talented Arabians and carried out the vision of her grandfather to challenge horse and rider to follow in the footsteps of the Pony Express. She was a tireless advocate for trail protection and maintenance. Robie Park near Lake Tahoe is part of her legacy. On top of all her accomplishments, she was the nicest, most thoughtful person one could ever meet! She was always willing to help out her friends and acquaintances and always had a smile on her face. There is now a giant hole in the heart of the endurance community that can never be filled.
Margo Seabourn
June 20, 2018
Marion will always be remembered as unique and hard working for our beloved trails, especially the Western States and Pioneer Express Trails. With her side kick, Marilyn Hunter, she got involved in NATRC as a rider and manager , particularly the Robie Park Ride. Her maps where legendary., like no others . We called them "Chinese take out menus"& you really knew you were a trail rider if you could follow her maps! We loved her for that memory . RIP Marion from your NATRC family.
Debbie Murphy
June 20, 2018
I knew Marion for about ten years and rode with her as a member of the Folsom Lake Trail Patrol. She was a very interesting and knowledgeable person.
Mary Freeland
June 18, 2018
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