Art Downard, 101, Webster City

Art Downard, 101, Webster City

Arthur “Art” L. Downard, 101, long-time Webster City resident and business-man, passed away Tuesday, December 12, 2017. A Celebration of Life will be held on Monday, December 18, 2017 at 1:00 p.m. at Asbury United Methodist Church with Pastor Jeff Flagg officiating.

Art was born May 26, 1916 in Webster City, the son of Fred B. and Josephine C. Downard. Art graduated from high school and junior college in Webster City and began his career in the theatre business at age 14 at the Granada Theatre, now the Webster Theatre.

Nearly all of his 50 years in the movie business were spent managing the Webster, Isis and Corral Drive-In Theatres. After the Isis Theatre closed in 1954, he bought the Webster and Corral Theatres and along with his wife operated them until their retirement in 1980.

Art served his country during World War II from 1942 to 1946. He taught air corp administration for 2 ¢ years to officers, then spent five months in the Pentagon and a year in the Philippines with a 36 man aerial photography group.

Upon his return from the service he met and married Patricia “Pat” Scoles, the daughter of Neil B. and Lydia Scoles, on February 20, 1947. They were happily married 70 years and are the parents of Josie, Larry and Tom.

Art served on dozens of boards and committees during his long career, including 30 years on the Webster City Civil Commission. He belonged to the Rotary Club, Kiwanis Club, Elks Club, and Theatre Operators of America. He was a 50-year member of the American Legion and the Webster City Country Club. Art was a member of Asbury United Methodist Church along with his wife Pat.

Survivors include his wife, Pat of Webster City; children, Josie and husband, Ted Kesler of Houston, TX, Larry Downard and husband, Larry Cusack of Portland, OR, Tom Downard and wife, Kim Knight of Boston MA; grandchildren, Chris Kesler of Houston, TX, Carrie Swearingen of Houston, TX and Lydia Downard of Boston, MA; sister, Charlotte Philips of Apple Valley, CA; three great-grandchildren; nieces, nephews and extended family.

He was preceded in death by his parents and brother, Ralph Downard.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to the Kendall Young Library or Asbury United Methodist Church in memory of Art.

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