Obituary of Arnett H. Bodenhamer
Arnett Humphrey Bodenhamer, was born April 17, 1934, in Giles County, Tennessee. He was the fourth son of William "Sam" and Pearline Bell (Pryor-Brown) Bodenhamer. He was called "Buba" by family and close friends, "Art" by others, and Command Sergeant Major by military veterans. After the death of his father in 1935, Arnett's mother moved to Nashville, to make a better life for her three surviving sons. Arnett remained in Giles County with his grandmother, Addie Pryor Brown, for several years. He was finally brought to Nashville to start school at Ford Green Elementary, later attended Washington Jr. High, and graduating from Pearl High School. While in school he learned to play musical instruments, primarily the trumpet, and played in the school bands. He later played in a local Jazz band traveling around the south and became an excellent billiards player. In June 1952, Arnett joined the United States Army, assigned to Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri, and later sent to Camp Haugen, Japan and South Korea during the Korean conflict with the 24th Infantry Division, 19* Infantry Regiment. As a young Army Corporal his assignment included a guard at a Korean Prisoner of War Camp, which he admitted it took nerves of steel to remain calm and focused. In 1966-1967 and then 1970-1971 he served tours of duty in the Republic of Vietnam (I Field Forces, Artillery Vietnam and 2nd Armored Division Artillery). Arnett's other assignments included the Panama Canal Zone (1* Brigade 20* Infantry), Honduras and Costa Rica, Germany, Fort Hood, TX.(III Corps), Fort Campbell, Ky. (101* Airborne), Fort Bragg, S.C. (XVII Airborne Corps Field Artillery), Fort Polk, LA., and Fort Jackson, S.C., Fort Sill, OK.(US Army Field Artillery School), With his articulate manner and charismatic personality, he rapidly rose in rank and was promoted to Command Sergeant Major (E-9) in 1969, the highest enlisted soldier rank. With his honorable and distinguished service Arnett received many awards and accolades which included; the Legion of Merit, Bronze Star(3* award), Meritorious Service Medal, Air Medal, Army Commendation Medal (4* Award), Good Conduct Medal (5 Loops), National Defense Medal (2nd Award), Korean Service Medal (Bronze Service Star), Vietnam Service Medal (Silver Service Star), Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citation, United Nations Service Medal, and the Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal. Arnett was a successful businessman having his own business, Arnett and Associates. This led to his membership and former Vice Presidency of the Nashville Chapter of 100 Black Men, for the nurturing and growth enhancement of young black males, providing academic enrichment and experiential learning activities. As a member of the NAACP since 1966, he became the Nashville Chapter President in 2005 serving for two years. A committed community servant, he has served in organizations large and small. These included the Metro Planning Commission, Metro Board of Parks and Auditorium Commissions and the Nashville Sports Authority. He was a graduate of Leadership Nashville, established to give executive members a channel of communication between leaders and community on issues and insight on solutions. This helped in his input for the Francis Guess (28* Avenue) Bridge Connector. Arnett has been a lifelong member of Friendship Missionary Baptist Church, 32" Avenue North in Nashville. His dedicated discipleship helped pave his way to serve as the Chairman of the Trustee Board for many years. Arnett was married to Brenda Alfreda Gilliam, of Clinton S.C. in 1956, and later to Regina Fuller of Nashville. He is the father of Arnett II (Katie), stepson, Pompey (Meka) Hawkins, and grandfather to Maddux, Myles, and Monroe.
In lieu of flowers please make charitiable gifts to Red Cross, Pearl High Alumni Association or NAACP. The service can be viewed on Facebook at Lewis-WrightFD or on YouTube at Lewis and Wright Funeral Directors.To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Arnett Bodenhamer, please visit Tribute Store
Public Walk Through for Family and Friends
Celebration of Life
In Loving Memory
1934 - 2023
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Lewis & Wright Funeral Directors
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Phone: (615) 255-2371
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