Eugene Dudley "Gene" Arnold Jr.
Eugene Dudley "Gene" Arnold Jr. peacefully left us to be with his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, on Monday, April 6, 2009.
Gene was born on February 24, 1946, in Martinsville, Virginia. He grew up in Waynesboro, Virginia, and graduated from Waynesboro High School as Valedictorian of his Senior Class. Gene graduated from the University of Virginia in 1968 with a Bachelor of Civil Engineering. After spending two years in active duty in the Army as a legal clerk, Gene attended the Georgia Institute of Technology, where he earned a Master's Degree in Civil Engineering.
Gene was preceded in death by his father, Eugene Dudley Arnold Sr.
He is survived by his high school sweetheart and wife of 39 years, Jeannie; his daughter, Patty; his sons, Kenny, Ben, and Joe; his daughter-in-law, Heather; his grandchildren, Zachariah, Micah, AnnaGrace and Elianna; his mother, Nina Arnold; his mother-in-law, Dot Powell; his sister, Lesa Chesson and her husband, Frank; his brother, David Arnold; his sister-in-law, Susan Lynch and her husband, Steven; his sister-in-law, Marianne Powell; his nieces, Lauren, Laura, Destiny, Jennifer, Missy and Clarissa; and his nephews, Christopher and Timothy.
Gene retired from the Virginia Department of Transportation Research Council on July 1, 2008, after 40 years of service. In his career as a Transportation Planner and Research Scientist, he published 45 research reports, contributed to multiple journals and newsletters and presented at numerous state and national professional meetings.Gene is remembered by his colleagues as the man who people sought out for technical assistance, because he did not quit until he was able to give a thorough response. Gene was actively involved for many years in the Institute of Traffic Engineering (ITE). He served as secretary/ treasurer, vice president and president of the Southern District of ITE. Gene received the Outstanding Individual Activity Award in 1986, the Distinguished Service Award in 1996, the Marble J. Hensley Outstanding Individual Activity Award from the Southern District in 2000, was designated an Honorary member of VASITE in 2002, and received the Herman J. Hoose Distinguished Service Award from the Southern District in 2005.
Gene was admired by his family, friends and colleagues for his devotion to community service. One of Gene's passions was to improve the lives of children and adults with special needs. He tirelessly worked as Area 3 Coordinator of Special Olympics, which includes the counties of Albemarle, Orange, Fluvanna, Louisa, and the City of Charlottesville.
His goal was to reach every individual with special needs in our area and get them involved in a sport. Gene was awarded the Stevens-Paige Award in August 2002 by the Arc of the Piedmont for his dedication to increasing recreational opportunities for people with disabilities.
Gene was a member of Spring Hill Baptist Church, where he served as team leader for the Special Needs Ministry. His calling was to reach families touched by special needs in the name of the Lord and offer them God's love. He was instrumental in developing Bible Study classes for children and adults with special needs. He and Jeannie worked together in implementing a respite program for parents of children with special needs and a game night for teens and adults with special needs.
The last 15 years of Gene's life were enriched by the friendships with individuals with special needs and their parents and caregivers. When Gene found out he was unable to volunteer because of his illness, he told Jeannie, "I wanted to do more."
A memorial service celebrating Gene's life will be held at Spring Hill Baptist Church in Ruckersville, Virginia, 2 p.m. Saturday, April 11, 2009. Burial will follow at Spring Hill Cemetery.
The family will receive friends at Spring Hill Baptist Church from 6 until 8 p.m. Friday, April 10, 2009, and following the service.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to Spring Hill Baptist Group Home Ministry or Area 3 Special Olympics, c/o Keith Haney Treasurer Area 3, P.O. Box 1408, Charlottesville, VA 22902.
Friends may sign the register book at www.hillandwood.com.
This obituary was originally published in the Daily Progress.