Ingersoll ‘Ingy’ Arnold
He was known far and wide as “Ingy,” and when he was 76 years old back in 1992 he received an official plaque from his alma mater, Bowdoin College, proclaiming him the school’s Number One Hockey Fan; citing, too, his undying loyalty and high enthusiasm for Bowdoin hockey.
It was, over the years, just one of the many hockey-related plaques he accumulated from appreciative groups. If the raw truth be known, though, had he received a plaque for every single achievement during his hockey lifetime, Ingy easily could have shingled his roof.
By his own admission, hockey-after his family-was his greatest love. The affair began early on, out on the ponds in and around his not-so-big hometown of Woodbridge, CT, a few miles northwest of New Haven. There were no coaches or organized programs back then, just a lot of black ice to skate on.
Then came his high-school years at Morristown-Beard School (class of 1935) in Morristown, NJ where he found a formal hockey program. For four seasons, he excelled. He also played baseball, and ran cross country and track. In April, 1994 at age 78, he was inducted into that school’s Athletic Hall of Fame. Teammates recall he was a skater, playmaker and stick handler, all said with the word superb as a prefix.
Then came his four years (1935-39) at Bowdoin College where he was the first freshman to play on the varsity hockey team. When it was over, he owned a BA in math and a burnished hockey reputation.
He went on to Yale graduate school (1939-41), earning a masters in forestry while playing for two Senior Hockey teams, one of which almost won the 1940 National Invitational Tournament at Lake Placid.
During WWII, he served with the US Army (1943-47) as an officer. He was awarded a Purple Heart but still managed to play hockey, skating in Europe on an Army team that won the 1946 ETO championship. For that, he received a commemorative wristwatch that remains among his family’s treasures.
Ingy’s first appearance in New Hampshire was in 1948. He arrived with hockey on his mind and played one season with Concord’s legendary Sacred Heart team. A year later, he left, to take a position at Michigan State University as an instructor and director of the forestry program. By 1957 was back in Concord where he was about to begin a stellar tenure as a player, referee and, most importantly, a coach.
His commitment to coaching began in 1959 when he learned there existed a keen interest in creating the Concord Youth Hockey Association. He joined founder Russ Martin and several other local men, and between 1959 and 1985 devoted his skills, energies and time to young skaters.
At the end of those 25 consecutive seasons, he stepped down-not due to waning interest but because of a nagging leg injury. He was then nearly 71 years old. The Concord Youth Hockey Association immediately honored him with a plaque for his 25 years of commitment, having worked closely and mostly with the mite and squirt divisions. In 2005, the CYHA inaugurated the annual Ingy Arnold Good Sportsmanship trophy for members of the Mite travel team. A tuition scholarship for Mites and for first-year travel-team players also has Ingy’s name on it.
Away from the rink, Ingy for several years was a coach of another sort. He volunteered as a teacher of woodworking/carpentry for a large number of kids in grades 1 to 4 in two area school systems. His work life was devoted to forestry and for 24 years he was director of the New Hampshire Forestry Nursery in Gerrish. He retired in 1981 at age 66.
For many years he and his wife, Dorothy, now deceased, resided in Hopkinton. His daughter Anne (Missy) Field, his granddaughter, Alice, and son-in-law, Walter, reside in Concord.