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Robert Arrighini was born on December 21, 1919 in San Francisco, CA. He as the son of Ruggero Arrighini and Florence Stephens and graduated from Jefferson High School in Daly City, CA, on June 8, 1938. After graduation, he worked on furnaces, doing both installations and repair.
Robert was inducted on January 7, 1943 and then went into active service on the 14th. He was assigned to Company B of the 823rd Tank Destroyer Battalion, which saw action throughout Europe receiving credit for participating in the Normandy, Northern France, Central Europe, Ardennes and Rhineland campaigns. Robert was awarded the EAME Ribbon, American Campaign Ribbon, Good Conduct Medal and the Purple Heart for wounds he received on October 12, 1944. He also shared in the success of his unit, which received the Distinguished Unit Citation. Robert left the service at the rank of Technician 5th Grade.
Robert had met his bride to be, on a blind date, in San Francisco, during the summer of 1942. He was doing his furnace work and Lillian was working as a telephone operator for Pacific Bell. Lillian and her parents, William J. Hodges and the former Priscilla Williams, moved to a farm in Liberty, Texas just about the time Robert was moved to Camp Hood, Texas. Lillian had been born in Quinlan, TX so this was not an unusual move but it did prove to be a lucky break for their courtship. Every chance he could, Robert hitch-hiked to visit Lillian, which continued even after their marriage. They were married on August 9, 1943 in Liberty, TX, which was about 250 miles from Camp. Lillian saved all of Robert's letters, particularly the one describing his return to the base, in March 1944 (his last trip home until October 31, 1945) which relates a long list of funny but very touching circumstances, including flat tires, missed buses and much, much more.
When Robert returned to the states, he found work as a diesel mechanic and later as the Manager of a Transportation Company. The couple lived most of their lives in San Francisco but later moved to Daly City. They also had four children, Patricia born in 1944, Roberta born in 1948, and twins sons, Rodger and Robert born in 1951. In his spare time Robert Sr. enjoyed making custom jewelry, wood carving and rock hunting. He passed away on November 23, 1981 and was buried in the Olivet Cemetery in Colma, California.