As this year’s N-C-A-A basketball tournament moves closer to the championship game, members of the 1980 Iowa Final Four team are looking to give an assist to one of their teammates. Kenny Arnold, a member of that Hawkeye team that captured the state’s attention with its tournament run two decades ago, was diagnosed and treated for a malignant brain tumor 1985. Hawkeye teammate Mark Gannon says members of the 1980 team decided to do something after seeing Arnold’s condition at a reunion in January. He says it became obvious to everyone that they needed to do something. Gannon says coach Lute Olson called everyone after the reunion because Olson was not able to attend. He says the reoccurring theme among the players was that Arnold did not look good, so he says coach Olson got the idea for a trust to help Arnold underway. Gannon says Arnold is down to 130 pounds and is a shell of himself compared to his Hawkeye playing days. He says the trust will help Arnold improve his health.
He says Arnold was determined to be ineligible for disability payments, and he says the trust is designed to provide medical treatment for him. Gannon says Arnold needs to change his medication and undergo some physical therapy. He says they’ve hired a disability lawyer and all indications are that Arnold should be eligible for Medicare. Gannon says trust is a stepping stone to get Arnold on the right track. He says the use of the money from the trust is to bridge the gap between now and when Arnold gets on disability, it’s not a permanent thing. He says they don’t know how long it will take to get him on disability. He says they have to switch Arnold’s medication, which costs about 15-thousand dollars year, and Arnold needs to see a neurologist monthly to monitor the medication. Gannon says he’s heard from a lot of people since they launched the Kenny Arnold Trust.
He says he’s heard from people who knew Arnold, and those who didn’t, and says the outpouring has been “overwhelming.” He says Arnold “really appreciates it, he’s a very quiet and shy man with an unbelievable faith.” Gannon says anyone who wishes to help out can donate.
He says you can make a donation to “The Kenny Arnold Trust” at any U.S. Bank. Or you can send the donations to the U.S. Bank, 270 West Seventh Street, Dubuque Iowa, 52001. Envelopes should be addressed to the attention of Connie Francis. Donations to the Kenny Arnold Trust are not tax-deductible. The Iowa team fell to eventual National Champion Louisville in the semifinals in 1980 and went on to win the third-place game.