Cover photo for Arthur E. Theil's Obituary
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Arthur E. Theil

August 31, 1931 — June 7, 2024

Arthur E. Theil

Arthur Edward Theil, Jr., was born to Dorothy Shutze Theil (dec.) and Arthur Edward Theil, Sr. (dec.) in Sandusky, Ohio. He graduated from Sandusky High School in 1949 where he played in the band and was also the drum major of the marching band. After high school, Art attended and graduated from Capitol University in Columbus, Ohio. The highlight of his college career was meeting Mary Lou Snively. They were married on June 14, 1953, at Trinity Lutheran Church in Carrollton, Ohio, which was Mary Lou’s home town. Mary Lou preceded Art in death in 2022. During their time in Carrollton, the Theil family grew to include Kathy, Mike, and Cheri.

Arthur had a very noteworthy career as a band and choir director in Malvern, Sandy Valley, Carrollton, and Fremont High Schools in Ohio. While at Carrollton, his band was selected to represent the State of Ohio at the premier of the movie, The Music Man, in Mason City, Iowa. They also performed at halftime of Cleveland Browns and Pittsburgh Steelers football games.

Following his outstanding career in Ohio high schools, Art was recruited by The University of North Alabama (formerly Florence State University) to become their band director. His first band consisted of 56 members and grew to over 125.

His final career move was to Memphis State University, now known as The University of Memphis. At Memphis, Art became Director of Bands and conducted the marching band, wind ensemble, concert band, a jazz band, and taught private lessons. In addition to his duties as an educator, he was also a very much sought after professional musician, playing for such greats as Ella Fitzgerald, Boots Randolph, Brenda Lee, Red Skelton, Bob Hope, Isaac Hayes, Jack Benny, Eddie Arnold, Yul Brenner, Dick Van Dyke, Sonny and Cher, Danny Thomas, etc.

In 1987, Mary Lou and Art retired to North Port, FL. Not wishing to be bored, he continued to play professionally and became the conductor of the North Port Orchestra, Good Shepherd Episcopal Church Choir in Punta Gorda, Holy Trinity Lutheran Church Choir and First Presbyterian Church Choir in Port Charlotte.

A “second retirement” came in 2002 when Art and Mary Lou moved to a guest house connected to daughter Cheri’s house in Olive Branch, MS. They resided there until 2017, when Kathy and Cheri began the process of retiring to Hot Springs Village, Arkansas. They found an assisted living facility located about 10 minutes from their daughters.

Art was preceded in death by his parents and by the love of his life, Mary Lou, who passed away in 2022. He is survived by Kathy Hendricks (Terry) of Hot Springs Village, AR, Mike Theil (Terri) of Arlington, TN, and Cheri Theil (Wanda Fisher) of Hot Springs Village. He was blessed to have four grandchildren, Shelly Joyner (Troy Dykstra), Fletch Joyner (Hilary), Lauren Boes (Kevin) and Katie Theil. The latest additions to his family were two great grandchildren, Brady Arthur Boes and Elsie Paige Boes. He will be missed by many friends and relatives.

Arthur was a member of Christ of the Hills United Methodist Church in Hot Springs Village, AR. He was also a Mason and a former Lions Club member.

Art has asked that in lieu of flowers that he be honored by prayers for the family and contributions to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, TN.

A memorial service will be held at a later date.

Arrangements made under the direction of CedarVale Funeral Home inside the Hot Springs Village. Guests may register at

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Arthur E. Theil, please visit our flower store.


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