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Sunderland fan with magic memories of both 1937 and 1973 FA Cup victories celebrates 100th birthday with look back over amazing life

Staunch Black Cats fan Arnold Landau is 100 today – and what an amazing life he has led.

Wednesday, 13th April 2022, 9:17 am

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The keen supporter watched the FA Cup homecoming parade in 1937 after Sunderland beat Preston North End 3-1 in the final.

And four decades later he was at Wembley with his sons when Sunderland beat Leeds 1-0 to lift the Cup in 1973 – sitting just behind Dave Watson’s mother.

The long-time season ticket holder has passed on his love for The Lads to his family. His grandson Rafi who teaches Philosophy at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, is often seen wandering the campus in a 1999 Sunderland shirt.

Sunderland man Arnold Landau who has celebrated his 100th birthday.

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But today is all about Arnold who is a father-of-four, grandfather of seven and great grandfather of 12. Son Ronnie shared his dad’s wonderful life story.

Arnold lived in various parts of Sunderland including Salem Avenue until he was 6, then Brookside Terrace, Nilverton Avenue, Ryhope Road, Queen Alexandra Road, Killingworth Drive, before moving on to Washington and eventually Buckinghamshire.

He went to West Park Central Secondary School but left at 15 to support his widowed mother Fanny in running the family business and making a huge success out of it.

During the Second World War, he served on the ground staff in the Royal Air Force and worked on radar. He saw service in Germany and Belgium soon after D-Day, said Ronnie.

The FA Cup parade through the streets of Sunderland in 1937.

Arnold is a former businessman and lived in Sunderland until his mid-60s when he left to be nearer family in Buckinghamshire and his wife Mary.

He will be remembered by shoppers across Wearside. He ran the family’s F Clark furniture shop in Olive Street when he was managing director until he retired at 64.

"He provided a lot of employment,” said Ronnie. "He is a real Sunderland guy. He has followed, with great passion, the fortunes of his beloved football team.

"He has passed on his great enthusiasm for The Lads to his extensive family of children, grandchildren and even great-grandchilldren, who are now scattered all over the country and, indeed, the world.

F.Clark furniture shop in Olive Street which Arnold ran as the managing director.

"One of his grandchildren, now an American citizen, who teaches Philosophy at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, is often seen wandering the campus attired in a Sunderland shirt.”

Ronnie vividly remembers the day he went with his dad to watch the 1973 FA Cup Final. “Dad bought tickets from one of the Sunderland players and we sat directly behind Dave Watson’s mother. I embraced her on the full time whistle.

"Dad also remembers Raich Carter and the 1937 Cup Final team coming home with the FA Cup.”

Arnold’s love of sport extends beyond the Black Cats. He was also a great supporter of the cricket, rugby and tennis scene at Ashbrooke.

Arnold Landau in his RAF days.

And on top of all that, he was also president of Birtley Rotary Club from 1984 to 1985.

We love to hear about stalwart Sunderland fans and their amazing life stories. Do you know of someone who deserves to have their achievements in the spotlight.

Get in touch and tell us more by emailing [email protected]

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Arnold Landau, left, aged 4 in a family photo from 1926.
Bringing the FA Cup home in 1937.
Arnold Landau in 1960.
Arnold with his son Ronnie and American grandson Rafi in 2016.