Remembering Ann & Arne

Last month I participated in a women in comics panel at  local library, and was introduced to the parents of a fellow panelist. The dad mentioned he was a neuroscientist, and I immediately responded with my only frame of reference; Ann Dvorak’s 1934 ranch house was later purchased by a UCLA professor of neurology who allowed my husband and me to have our wedding there. When I followed up that the owner of the house was Arnold Scheibel, the man got wide-eyed and said, “Wow. He’s a big deal in the field.”

Knowing next to nothing about neuroscience, I’ll have to take his word for it, but I can certainly speak for myself in affirming that Arne was indeed a big deal. He was someone who opened up his home to me on multiple occasions, and later extended the invitation for all my friends and family.  He preserved part of Ann’s legacy by making sure her home stayed intact for the 50 years he inhabited it, and also contributed to her story by corresponding with Ann directly in the 1960s and then handing those letters over to me for the Ann Dvorak biography.

Dr. Arnold Scheibel passed away this week at the age of 94.

During my quest to document Ann Dvorak’s life, I came across many people who I otherwise would have never encountered. Arne was certainly one of them, and I will forever be grateful that Ann brought such an intelligent, kind, and gracious man into my life. I will treasure the time we spent chatting while sitting in front of the picture window looking out over the grounds Ann built, or discussing her the many walks we took around the property. He didn’t need to let a completely stranger into his life, but he did so without hesitation.

Arne was truly a great man and had a hell of life. Thank you Ann Dvorak for making it possible for me to call this man my friend.

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6 Responses to “Remembering Ann & Arne”

  1. Karen Lawrence says:

    Lovely to hear your story

  2. DickP says:

    I wish the world had more people like your friend Arne! AND, more people that are caring like OUR friend, Christina!!

  3. Rachel Cohen says:

    Christine,

    This was a nice tribute to your friend Arne.

    I am in awe of all that you have accomplished! Not that I ever doubted you. Drive, desire, determination, passionate, that is you. I am truly happy for you. Keep up the great work!!

    Rachel

  4. Al Rice says:

    Wonderful and fascinating story.

  5. Sidat Balgobin says:

    Christina, a lovely tribute to this wonderful, caring man. And he kept Ann’s letters! It helped to understand Ann, especially in some of her more difficult years. I am grateful to you both.

  6. Christina Rice says:

    Thanks, Sidat. He was so generous and very diplomatic when discussing Ann’s issues when he knew her. Such a wonderful person!

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