Born and raised in Bryan, Ohio, on Sept. 23, 1931, Arthur graduated from the U.S. Military Academy, West Point, N.Y., on June 2, 1953, and was commissioned a second lieutenant in the U.S. Air Force.
A 20-year US Air Force flight commander, Arthur piloted Air Force One for President Johnson, as well as wounded battlefield soldiers to hospitals, as a Vietnam medivac pilot while flying the C-123 aircraft.
After his West Point graduation, in Defiance, Ohio, Arthur met Mary Ann on a blind date, proposed six days later and six months later on Dec. 26, 1953, started a marriage that lasted 66 years, producing five beautiful children (Michael, Bruce, Michelle, Lisa and Neil) and many truly precious memories.
Arthur and Mary Ann retired to Roanoke and assisted with Habitat for Humanity builds. They spent 20 years of retirement helping build more than 400 homes for Habitat for Humanity (HFH). They wintered in Vero Beach, Fla., then helped at builds while chasing springtime north to Michigan and Wisconsin and south through Oklahoma while driving a huge motorhome, complete with slideouts, and towing a minivan full of cordless power tools. At HFH build sites, Arthur would place more than $3,500 worth of expensive cordless tool kits in a row, each kit with multiple batteries and chargers, connected to long power strips, and loan out every expensive tool. In 20 years, nothing was ever stolen.
As their health declined, they downsized from the motorhome, to a van, then to a minivan, and finally to where they had to make the call that they made their last HFH build.
After more than 60 years of marriage, Arthur had to put Mary Ann in a nursing home in 2016 and would visit her three times a day to feed her. His health eventually declined to where he had to join her in the nursing home, and he continued to feed her at every mealtime, until her passing-away last year on Sept. 14, 2019, after 66 years of marriage.
On Friday, Aug. 28, 2020, the Long Grey Line of deceased West Point graduates are standing aside to welcome the most distinguished, newest member and best Daddy in the world, my Dad, Arthur Mavis.
Dad's wisdom of flying was also his wisdom of life: there will always be turbulence. Even subtle turbulence. So, keep calm and relax.
The family requests that, in lieu of flowers, donations be sent to your local Habitat for Humanity chapter.
On Sept. 5, Art was laid to rest alongside Mary Ann and Bruce in Dawsonville Memorial Gardens, Dawsonville, Ga.
Art's family may be contacted through son Neil Mavis, 1611 S. Utica Ave. #140, Tulsa, OK 74104-4909, Phone (918) 645-1645, email - email@example.com