Arnold honored for decades of officiating


By Chris Hoppes - [email protected]



Wayne Arnold was recognized at the Washington vs McClain District semifinal basketball game Saturday, Feb. 26, 2022 at Southeastern High School near Chillicothe. Arnold, pictured with wife Lesley, has been officiating for 46 years.

Wayne Arnold was recognized at the Washington vs McClain District semifinal basketball game Saturday, Feb. 26, 2022 at Southeastern High School near Chillicothe. Arnold, pictured with wife Lesley, has been officiating for 46 years.


Courtesy photo

Wayne Arnold has been getting up and down basketball courts since the mid-1970’s.

The miles traveled by an official who has worked games for 46 years is virtually incalculable.

Arnold was honored for his officiating career to this point with a plaque during a special presentation at the Washington Blue Lions vs McClain Tigers District semifinal basketball game Saturday, Feb. 26 at Southeastern High School.

“My doctor told me to keep active and stay running,” Arnold said. “I enjoy doing it. I love working with all the kids and coaches, as well.”

Arnold learned of the recognition two days before the game and that he would be one of three officials so honored.

The other two officials recognized that night were Dan Drummond (50 years, football and basketball) and Danny Oates (41 years). Both are from Chillicothe.

“It was a surprise, very much so,” Arnold said. “I appreciate it. There are a lot of good fans out there who have told me they like the way I called the ball games or didn’t like it. I’ve heard both and I don’t pay any attention to it.

“I can honestly say, in my 46 years, it doesn’t seem that long, but I have yet to throw out a fan,” Arnold said. “I just look at them and smile and they know they can’t get the best of you and they don’t get on you. I appreciate all the fans.”

Arnold related something he has said to teams prior to games.

“‘If we miss a call on this end, we’re not going to go to the other end and make it up,’” Arnold said. “‘If you don’t miss any baskets, we’ll not miss any calls. Have a good game.’ That’s the way I feel.”

Arnold is appreciative of the recognition.

“It’s an honor. I used to call (a lot of games) down in there,” Arnold said. “There are very few schools I haven’t been in in southeastern Ohio.”

Arnold was joined for the occasion by his wife, several other relatives and Bob and Lisa Schwartz and Doug and Faith Marine.

Arnold, a farmer by profession, has also been a 4-H club advisor since 1964.

“I love to work with the kids,” Arnold said. “If you have kids that are in sports or 4-H, they don’t get into trouble.”

Folks may wonder how much longer Arnold will be running up and down basketball courts, officiating games.

“I’ll be 80 in May,” Arnold said. “If everything works well and the doctor says, ‘keep running,’ I’m going to run until I have to quit. I’m going to try. That’s all I’m going to say. I’m going to try.”

Wayne Arnold was recognized at the Washington vs McClain District semifinal basketball game Saturday, Feb. 26, 2022 at Southeastern High School near Chillicothe. Arnold, pictured with wife Lesley, has been officiating for 46 years.
https://www.recordherald.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/27/2022/03/web1_Wayne-Arnold-honored.jpgWayne Arnold was recognized at the Washington vs McClain District semifinal basketball game Saturday, Feb. 26, 2022 at Southeastern High School near Chillicothe. Arnold, pictured with wife Lesley, has been officiating for 46 years. Courtesy photo

By Chris Hoppes

[email protected]