Arne was born in Vestnes, Norway. His parents Arne Oas and Karen Marie (Stiansen) were US citizens visiting Norway to build his grandmother a home on the family farm. He spent his first two years in Norway before returning to their home in Ruth, Nevada. His father supervised a carpentry crew for Kennecott Mining Company and when deciding to start his own business, moved to Ely, Nevada. Arne started working with his father at a young age (was driving a truck at the age of 12). He continued working as a carpenter and furthering his education at the University of Nevada (member of the Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity). To earn money for schooling, he was working as a carpenter in Sitka, Alaska when he received notice that Pearl Harbor had been attacked. He returned to Nevada to join the Army Air Corp and was trained as a pilot to be sent to the China/IBurma/India Theatre. The crew flew their aircraft (Lonesome Polecat Jr., B24 Liberator) from Florida to Kunming, China where they flew “The Hump” with Chennault and the Flying Tigers 14th AF, 308th Bomber Group (Barber Squadron). The entire Polecat crew were fortunate to all return home safe. He left the service ranked as a USAAC Captain and continued his flying career with American Airlines until retiring in 1981 as Senior Captain. He was a member of Grey Eagles, QBs and belonged to the Blue Masonic Lodge in Los Angeles and Knights Templar in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
Arne grew up next door to the one love of his life Virginia Mae (Puryear). Before Arne left for China, Virginia (carrying their wedding cake) took a train to meet him in King City, California where they married October 31, 1942. They spent 72 years together (38 years in their home in Minden, Nevada).
He is survived by his wife, Virginia, and their two children; Arne Oas III and Margaret Marie Fromelius. He is also survived by four grandchildren; Arne (Linde) Oas IV, Steven Oas, Ann Fromelius (Todd Smith), and Jenifer (Ryan) Mersman, and two great-grandchildren; Arne Oas V and Jillian Smith. He will be missed by all that knew him. Greeting him on the other side will be his crew, his huckleberry friends from Ely, Nevada, one grandson, and multiple friends and family that left before him.
”When the goals are reached at last, when all the flying’s done, I’ll answer to HIM with no regrets….Indeed I had some fun!”
It is his preference to leave quietly with no wake or service. Please cherish the memories. In lieu of flowers or donations, we request you give your family a hug.