Arlen was born at Fort Monmouth, N.J., to Annabelle (Kvidt) and Allen Norby, but if you asked him, he was from Grants, N.M.

Pop-Dad-Husband-Police-Officer, Arlen was the best in every role he ever had.

He loved the Cubbies, spending time with his grandchildren, proving his point, working on his many hobbies and moving cross country more than the average nomad.

Arlen was an Army veteran and retired police officer. He was proud to be a graduate of the New Mexico State Police Academy and School of Police Staff and Command at Northwestern University.

His career as a law enforcement officer was a defining part of his life. He made a difference in the lives of so many as a public servant with both the New Mexico State Police and, later, the Rio Rancho Department of Public Safety.

Arlen served the Rio Rancho community as a police officer beginning in 1989 until his retirement as a lieutenant in 2006.

While with DPS, Arlen enjoyed working the graveyard shift as a patrolman and helped to begin the department’s first K-9 unit.

Arlen Richard Norby

As a detective in the Investigations Unit, he worked tirelessly to start up the Domestic Abuse Response Team (D.A.R.T.) as he was passionate about fighting against child abuse. Arlen served as association president for a number of years and was a strong advocate for his fellow officers, firefighters and dispatchers when negotiating contracts.

Last, but not least, Arlen was proud to be part of H-squad and considered them family for the rest of his life.

He married his best friend and high school sweetheart, Ann Marie (Lewis) in June 1973. They had three children, Tobi Smith, Carli (Robert) Pacheco and Donald (Shannon) Norby.

He was always present for his children and set a great example of what a husband, father and public servant should be. Kyle, Hannah, Riley, Grace, Becca and Alex were always happy to spend time “putzing” around with Pop.

He always worried the kids would think he was grumpy, but they knew he was the best grandpa ever.

If you ever met Arlen, you liked him. He was funny, smart, sarcastic and always interesting. He loved Trivial Pursuit, Guns & Ammo magazine, old Western moves, Chicago (with and without Peter Cetera), balancing his checkbook, New Mexican cuisine, his friends and his family.

He was a simple guy who spent the last two years battling cancer. He was ready to go, and even though we all will miss him more than words will ever convey, we are thankful his is no longer in pain.
Thank you for being you, Pop.

A celebration of life will be held on Feb. 12, 2022, at 10 a.m. at Rio Rancho United Methodist Church, 1652 Abrazo Road NE, Rio Rancho. Reception to follow, and masks are required.

In lieu of flowers, the family recommends making donations to the American Cancer Society at