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El Cajon Mortuary and Cremation Service

684 South Mollison Ave., El Cajon, CA

OBITUARY

Fernando "Ferd" Arreola

March 17, 1925June 4, 2020
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FERNANDO ARREOLA, MARCH 17, 1925 – JUNE 4, 2020. EL CAJON, CALIFORNIA

Fernando Arreola, aged 95, passed away peacefully at home, surrounded by family members, at 4:20 pm on 6-4-2020 from natural causes. He was a strong, independent man until he had a series of strokes starting on March 24, 2020.

Fernando was born in San Diego to Arnulfo and Maria Jesus Arreola, the second son; he had two brothers and three sisters. All of who predeceased him. His mother left when he was six years old and he was raised by his father’s sisters, Aunt Maggie Guatelli, and Aunt Carmen Torres. He considered Maggie his mother and her daughter Eva Guatelli, his sister. His cousins, Albert, Robert and Josephine Torres also resided in the home. As he grew older he spent time with his brother Manuel, who was five years younger and always helped him and bought him clothes. They retained a close bond until Manuel passed away in 2015.

Fernando went to Sherman Elementary School and Memorial Junior High School. At age 14 he spent a year in a boarding school in Tijuana.

In 1943 at age 18 he was drafted into the Army, to serve in World War II, he did his basic training at Camp Van Dorn in Mississippi and was then sent to the Pacific. He arrived in Papua, New Guinea and was assigned as a replacement to 24th Infantry Division, 19th Regiment, D company. He was a Heavy Weapons Specialist and was a gunner using an 81 mm mortar. He saw combat in Leyte, Mindoro and Isla Verde in the Philippine Islands. At one point they had to walk 100 miles across an island in combat conditions. At the end of the war he spent several months in Japan as an MP squad leader in the Army of Occupation. He attained the rank of Staff Sergeant. His time in the service had a great impact on him and throughout his life he told many stories of things he saw and events that happened.

He was a hardworking man from being very young and demonstrated that all his life. He worked for a while as a welder and then became a commercial tuna fisherman out of San Diego, when they fished with bamboo poles; he worked on several different boats and would be gone for weeks or months at a time. After seven years he finally left fishing when the boat he was working on sank, the crew were fortunate to be rescued and no lives lost.

In the mid fifties he joined Laborers Local 89 and worked as an electrician’s laborer for over 20 years, he remained a member of the union for the rest of his life. After he retired from construction he worked for Grossmont Union High School District first as a custodian and then as a grounds man. He also became a part time instructional aide for the Regional Occupation Program for Auto Repair Classes.

Fernando married in 1949 and adopted his wife’s 3-year-old daughter, Yolanda. They went on to have three more children. Fernando R., Christina and Jennifer. The marriage broke down and he was left in 1960 to raise the four children as a single parent. He was a strict disciplinarian, but loving and fair. In 1971 his daughter Yolanda lost her life, leaving four small children under six years of age, Paul, Rita, Darcy and Christine. He married his girl friend, Diane, in 1972 and together they adopted and raised the four children as their own.

He was a long time member of Los Ancianos Motorcycle Club, through which the whole family enjoyed camping in Mexico, beach parties, barbecues and assisting with off road races. He loved fishing, took every opportunity to go on Sport Fishing day trips until that became too much for him, he then enjoyed going to Shelter Island Pier early in the morning.

Fernando was deeply caring, outgoing, gentle, and yet tough as nails. He was loved and respected by his family throughout his life. He derived tremendous joy from family events and watching his children and grandchildren play various sports, including track and field, basketball, roller hockey, little league baseball, softball and soccer. His love permeated our lives and could be felt everywhere. He loved history, reading, fishing, telling stories, telling jokes (some of which were funny), cross word puzzles and watching History and Military TV channels. His greatest joy was being a husband, a dad, and "Papa" to his wonderful grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

He is survived by his loving wife of 48 years, Diane, his sons Fernando (Pattijo), Paul (Brooke), daughters, Christina Warren (Edward), Jennifer Weingarten (George), Rita Horne (Jeffrey) Darcy Lange, Christine Malmberg (Kent). Grandchildren, Yolanda Ramirez (Eric), Anthony Castro, Devin Gallagher Voight (Brandon), Garrett Gallagher, Selina Arreola, Payne Arreola, Jet Arreola, Ryan Horne, Dylan Lange, Dalton Lange, Kayla Malmberg, Cassidy Malmberg. Great Grandchildren, Gabriel Leonguerrero, Tiana Castro, Zachary Gallagher Ruiz, and Charles Voight.

A memorial service and reception are planned on Thursday, July 9th 2020 at 2 p.m. at El Cajon Mortuary, 684 South Mollison Ave, El Cajon, CA 92020.

His ashes will be interred at Miramar National Veterans Cemetery at a later date.

Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at www.elcajonmortuary.com for the ARREOLA family.

  • FAMILY

  • Diane Arreola, Wife
  • Fernando R. Arreola, Son
  • Christina Warren (Edward), Daughter
  • Jennifer Weingarten (George), Daughter
  • Paul Arreola (Brooke), Son
  • Rita Horne (Jeffrey), Daughter
  • Darcy Lange, Daughter
  • Christine Malmberg (Kent), Daughter
  • Yolanda Arreola, Daughter (deceased)
  • Arnulfo Arreola, Father (deceased)
  • Maria Arreola, Mother (deceased)
  • Sylvester Arreola, Brother (deceased)
  • Guadalupe Arreola, Sister (deceased)
  • Sophia Arreola, Sister (deceased)
  • Manuel Arreola, Brother (deceased)
  • Virginia Arreola, Sister (deceased)
  • Fernando is also survived by 12 grandchildren and 4 great grandchildren

Services

9 July

Memorial Service

2:00 pm - 3:00 pm

El Cajon Mortuary and Cremation Service

684 South Mollison Ave.
El Cajon, CA 92020

9 July

Reception

3:00 pm - 5:00 pm

El Cajon Mortuary and Cremation Service

684 South Mollison Ave.
El Cajon, CA 92020

Memories

Fernando "Ferd" Arreola

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Suzy Kawka Ham

June 26, 2020

Many of our families were original new home buyers on Pallette Street. We moved in, in 1954 and I think there were only 2 houses left to choose from. My Mom Elsie (passed 2005 at 82) said there were 50 kids on the block at one time. It was so comfortable to visit at the Arreola's house. I always thought Mr (Ferd) Arreola was a bit big and intimidating. One of my favorite stories was when we would buy a chick at TG&Y at Easter. They were so cute, small and yellow. My Dad Joe build it a cage. This was short lived. Mine was a rooster and not such a nice animal. Mr Arreola offered to take him off my hands. He had a big pen, I think everybody's chickens ended up there. Not sure what happened to them. My Dad helped Ferd get a job at Grossmont School District where he worked. I haven't visited the neighborhood much since my Dad passed in 2011 at 90. Once in awhile I'd drive by our old house, and I'd think about Ferd being the last parent left. I bet they are having a great Pallette street reunion in Heaven. Talking about the good ol' days.

Patrick Gay

June 24, 2020

Mr. Arreola is the last 'parent' to leave the Pallette St. family.
As a kid, Mr. Arreola was the 'most feared' parent on our street. He was only feared because he cared and was up front with all of us. You knew he was coming home when you heard his motorcycle rumbling around the corner from Prescott - all of us would clear the street when that happened.
As the years went by and we all 'grew up', he was Mr. Arreola the 'respected' parent in our Pallette St. family.
One of the best stories of this 'family' was that he and my Dad shared the same birthday, March 17. I don't know who started it but one of them gave the other a birthday card one year with a message and signed. The following year, that person returned the card with a new message and signature. Yes, this same card made the rounds for several years until my Dad passed in 1989. These two men had a friendship we all wish for - who would have believed a man of Irish background and Mexican could be so close - lol. But, I know that they are now enjoying their new life together and can never be separated again.
"THANK YOU" Mr. Arreola for being a great neighbor - you will be missed.
"Your" Pallette Street Family

FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY

Chato, Christina, Yolanda, Jennifer Fernando
at Disneyland

FROM THE FAMILY

Papa and Garrett

FROM THE FAMILY

Fernando and Chato

FROM THE FAMILY

Fernando, Eva and Manuel
in Seattle

FROM THE FAMILY

Fernando and Eva in
Seattle

FROM THE FAMILY

Tiana and Papa

FROM THE FAMILY

Papa and Ryan

FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY

Chato, Christina, Yolanda, Jennifer Fernando
at Disneyland

FROM THE FAMILY

Papa and Garrett

FROM THE FAMILY

Fernando and Chato

FROM THE FAMILY

Fernando, Eva and Manuel
in Seattle

FROM THE FAMILY

Fernando and Eva in
Seattle

FROM THE FAMILY

Tiana and Papa

FROM THE FAMILY

Papa and Ryan

FROM THE FAMILY

Dylan Papa and Ryan

FROM THE FAMILY

Ryan and Papa at the Zoo