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Sunday, 8 February 2009

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Good bye George - you played your part well!



George Arndt

FAREWELL: Thomians staunch and true - in those four words the life and times of that lovable straight forward old boy of S. Thomas' College, Mount Lavinia George Arndt can be described. Arndt who was once the Head Prefect of S. Thomas' was captain, swimming, waterpolo and life-saving at the school and he continued his interest after leaving school and represented Ceylon (as the country was then known).

His death in Melbourne, Australia a few days ago somewhat shocked his friends here in Sri Lanka, especially the ones who were close to him at the Old Thomains Swimming Club where he was President for some time.

Besides representing S. Thomas' at swimming, waterpolo and life-saving, he was picked to represent Ceylon in the first life-saving team that participated in Australia.

George Arndt entered S. Thomas' in 1937 and started his 14-year association with the school in Miss Bay's class. The Arndt association with S. Thomas' goes back to Mutwal days and spans over 125 years. Living in Mutwal was fun, mainly because his father was a lover of the sea. Later the Arndt moved to Mount Lavinia to be close to the school by the sea. George,, by this time was a champion in the pool.

He was appointed Head Prefect after J.O. Yatawara left college, but his stint at the school was short as he left college to take up an appointment in the private sector.

George one of the firsts to be chosen by the College Appointments Board to be offered a job in the mercantile sector. He joined the reputed Swis Firm, Volkart Brothers in June 1951 and later he moved to Whittall and Company which renamed Whittal Boustread and he finally took over as CEO of George Steuarts Limited.

Arndt was married to Sheila Drieberg who pre-deceased him. He is the brother of Douglas who is in Sydney, the late Richard and Sredrick.

He was having a relaxed and retired life in Australia. He has been coming to Sri Lanka on holidays and never failed to come to the Old Thomians Swimming Club, where he has been President for quite some time.

George was a charming personality and all his friends are going to miss him a great deal.

Good bye George, you played your part well!

A.C. de Silva

 

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