Meet Carlton Senior Living spotlight residents, Arnie and Rita Stone. Arnie Stone was born March 18, 1928 in the Astoria neighborhood of Queens, New York, to parents Ruth and Manny. Rita was born December 16, 1929 in The Bronx, New York, to mother, Ann, and father, Benjamin. Arnie had a brother, Stanley, who was a salesman. Rita also had a brother, David, who worked as a purchasing agent.
In 1945, after high school, Arnie joined the U.S. Navy and remained enlisted through 1949. He was grateful for the opportunity to receive the GI Bill, allowing him to attend Pace University in Manhattan where he majored in accounting.
On a Saturday night in 1950, Arnie and two friends were deciding what they wanted to do that evening. They were at a Young Men’s Hebrew Association (similar to a YMCA) where there was a listing of several synagogues in which dances were taking place. Unable to decide which one to attend, Arnie pulled a coin from his pocket, flipped it, and he and his friends headed off.
Arnie saw a young, attractive lady there who was dancing very well. He decided to approach her and ask her for a dance. She agreed, and the two shared their first dance. Arnie says of the experience, “I’m a lousy dancer,” to which Rita quickly replied, “you were!” Arnie describes the serendipity of the coin toss and dance, stating, “I think it was worth going.”
The two were married in May 1950 and are often asked about the longevity of their marriage. Arnie says, “if you can have compromise, you’ll make it.” They raised two sons, Doug, who lives in Davis, and their late son Steven, whom Rita describes as having been so generous and giving. They have a grandson, Jared, 27, also of Davis.
Arnie worked for several music companies, including Columbia Records and MCA. Rita worked for several attorney agencies and as a spokesperson and lecturer for the Weight Watchers program. Rita’s first job was working in the Empire State Building. On one infamous day, the elevator system failed, and she was stuck 52 floors up. She and her colleagues climbed down all those flights of stairs, and Rita’s father, very upset, told her to quit that day.
Arnie and Rita have lived in various places, including Ohio and New Jersey, before moving to L.A., Roseville, and now Davis to be close to family. Asked about a life philosophy, Rita states, “respect everyone’s differences.” Asked who he most admires, Arnie says President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Rita describes a fond memory of meeting Frank Sinatra.
They both love classic movies and early rock ‘n’ roll. Arnie also enjoys playing table tennis and poker. They agree that the people here at Carlton Davis are all so nice. “It’s very interesting to learn all the backgrounds and histories of the groups we have here.”
View additional Resident Spotlight articles.
Written by Eric Demuth