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Today, Saturday, March 12 a local racing legend and life-long resident of Kalamazoo, Jerry Arnold will be laid to rest. Arnold was well-known at Martin 131 Dragway and the current US 131 Motorsports Park as he started drag racing at its conception and went on to win back-to-back championships in the Modified class in 1973, 1974, 1975, and 1976. He was not only an accomplished racer here, but went on to win many races nationally, won national championships and set numerous records in the NHRA.
Under many of Arnold’s accomplishments, just to name a few, are his induction into the Michigan Motorsports Hall of Fame in 1998. Arnold also was a seven-time NHRA Division 3 Champion in the Competition Eliminator class. In 2000 he earned the title of NHRA’s World Champion in that same class.
Also, to certainly be noted, he served in the Marines during the Vietnam War.
It is evident to those who knew or heard of Jerry Arnold that he was gifted. If you didn’t know him, you have heard of him at the track. Being a fierce competitor and well-liked by many he will be missed. Our prayers are with his wife, Cheri and their family and friends. This is one Champion we will never forget.