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Ron Toomer has Passed Away

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I've seen enough posts on facebook and on other coaster sites to confirm this, but I haven't been able to locate a concrete news article on it. As soon as I find one, I'll get it posted. He was 81.


Here is the link to the article about his passing:




The amusement industry lost one of its brightest stars today with the passing Ronald V. Toomer who died peacefully in his sleep at 12:15 p.m. following a four-month battle with cancer. He was 81.


Born in Pasadena, Calif. on May 31, 1930, Ron spent his early life in the Golden State before being drafted into the U.S. Army in 1952. After 13 months in Germany, he returned home to continue his education. As a graduate of the University of Nevada-Reno (1961, B.S.), he worked for the Hercules Powder Company as a mechanical engineer on the nozzle section of the second stage Minuteman solid rocket motor. For Thermatest Laboratories Inc., he served as a mechanical engineer responsible for research and testing of high temperature materials for use in the aerospace industry including the design, development and manufacturing of the heat shield sensors for the NASA Apollo space program.


Privately, Ron enjoyed working with wood. He hand carved waterfowl and enjoyed assembling wooden car kits. He was an avid reader, enjoyed crossword puzzles, picture puzzles, cooking and gardening. In his younger years, he most enjoyed the days when he could hike and camp in the High Sierras and visit the nation’s National Parks.


Publicly, though, Ron is perhaps most well known for his work in the amusement industry with Arrow Development (aka Arrow Dynamics) and the creation of a vast number of attractions, particularly the modern steel roller coaster. While his first assignment with Arrow was water issues at Disneyland’s Pirates of the Caribbean, the Runaway Mine Train at Six Flags Over Texas was his first roller coaster project. Working alongside Carl Bacon, he helped produce a coaster that paved the way with an amazing collection of coaster and ride projects. All total, Toomer would be credited with 93 steel roller coasters. He assisted with countless other non-coaster rides, including the initial layout for the hillside setting of the Six Flags Magic Mountain log flume.


Prior to his death, he admitted that when it comes to professional achievements, he was most proud of his contribution to the development of the first practical upside-down coaster elements (The Corkscrew) and his induction into the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions Hall of Fame in the year 2000.


Ron is survived by his wife, Betty of 54 years, four children and their spouses: Gregory and Christie Toomer of Darien, Ga.; Carol and Jeffrey Thornton of Bedford, Texas; Gary and Alana Mitchell of Keller, Texas; Christopher and Kristi Toomer of Parker, Colo. and nine grandchildren.


A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 1 at the Martin United Methodist Church in Bedford, Texas. Flowers or cards may be sent to the church at: 2621 Bedford Road, Bedford, Texas 76021.


R.I.P. Coat Hanger Man

Edited by ernierocker
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Well, it's Wikipedia "official," for what that's worth...




Edit: I wasn't familiar with Ron Toomer until I researched who is was after his death. I now view him as a hero to the industry. I'm spiritual, and I hope that he will look over the industry from above. R.I.P.

Edited by DougMJr
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If you type in Ronald Toomer with Valentine in the keyword area, an 81 year old from Bedford, Texas passed away today. Did Ron Toomer (from Arrow) live in Bedford Texas?

Edited by larrygator
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I'm in a state of shock. Some may bring the coat-hanger building way up, but with the technology of the time, 2 thumbs up for Ron Toomer. the big arrow loopers and Maggie are orphan Those creations were more important to coaster developpement than Levy, probably

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Sad news indeed....


Weird thing is that I was looking at a coaster book yesterday, and there was a picture of him inside. I thought to myself "Man, he has to be close to death".I don't mean to sound insensitive either.


He was a HUGE part of the coaster world, and will live on in the history books as being a pioneer of coaster design.

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Makes me want to watch his older interviews. I remember seeing footage of him showing off the scaled model, then the full sized one at the Utah plant, of the Pipeline coaster. Too bad they never worked properly, because that would have been one more "trophy" to his list...

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