Monday, April 9, 2012

SGR Bids Farewell to Eldon McArthur

On April 6, 2012, members of the Rotary Club of St. George bid farewell to a dear friend and sterling example as Eldon McArthur, age 91, passed away at home from causes incident to age. It will be noted that Eldon lived life fully to the very end. He had attended the club's meeting just 4 days earlier, regaling club members with tales from his varied experiences and participating in the day’s tour of the Dinosaur Museum. No one could suspect that this would be the last meeting of the club we would be privileged to enjoy with Eldon.
Ask members what they remember of Eldon, and the responses will be as varied as the experiences of this giant among men that lived in humble service to all he could touch. He was known not just in the community, but around the world for his love and kindness and his generosity. Each Saturday, he baked bread and delivered it to neighbors and friends, annually to guests in the VIP tent at the St. George Marathon, and to others. A favorite horseplay auction was when Eldon offered a loaf or three of bread at club meetings. He was as generous with the pomegranates that grew in his yard, making sure anyone he knew would have sufficient for their Dixie salad.

Eldon’s Big Adventure

This is an account as told by Eldon McArthur and recorded by Logan Hebner as part of a project about Seniors in the Workforce. Eldon was 78 at the time and Mr. Hebner noted his incredible recall.

I always had a yearning to look the place over, so I rowed down the Canyon, once, from July 1st to the 22nd, 1957. I understand it was pretty high water, 100,000 cfs or more the day we put in. 
I met a man here in St. George who had crewed for Norm Nevills, Wayne McConkie. Wayne lived in Moab until he came to Dixie. This is way after the war and things had smoothed down a bit. Wayne was hard to get acquainted with; it took me three years. He was a great man, a good man, cousin to the McConkie who was an apostle for the (lds) Church. He'd been a sheepherder before he came to teach school. He said, “I'd rather herd sheep than kids; you can throw rocks at sheep.”