Cover photo for Donald Reese Gilbert's Obituary
Donald Reese Gilbert Profile Photo
1947 Donald 2019

Donald Reese Gilbert

August 15, 1947 — September 24, 2019

Donald Reese Gilbert, 72, passed away peacefully at home on September 24, 2019, after battling CBGD (Cortal Basel Ganglioic Degeneration) resulting from exposure to Agent Orange while serving in Vietnam. He was born on August 15, 1947 to Nolan Scott and Alma Winskowski Gilbert and lived in Harford County his entire life. He graduated from Bel Air Senior High School in 1965 and was drafted into the United States Army in 1969. He was trained as infantry and was assigned to the 25th Infantry Division as an Aero Rifleman serving in Vietnam with the "Tropic Lightning" Division. Don was awarded the National Defense Service Medal and the Vietnam Service Medal; the Combat Infantryman's Badge; the Army Commendation Medal; the Vietnam Cross of Gallantry w/Palm; Vietnam Campaign Medal and the Bronze Star. He was wounded and awarded the Purple Heart Medal while in Vietnam which was left behind because of the Laos Campaign issues at that time. He was Honorably discharged in 1970 as a SGT (E-5), Wounded Veteran. Don worked as a surveyor with Harford Survey Associates in Bel Air and then worked on his own as a surveyor for several years. Don was hired by the Aberdeen Test Center (ATC), Engineering Directorate at the Aberdeen Proving Ground. Throughout his 35-year career with ATC, Don was involved in many Army programs receiving recognitions and civilian awards for his efforts and successful accomplishments. He retired from the ATC Warfighting Directorate as a Mechanical Engineering Technician, Test Director in 2014. Don had a wonderful sense of humor, was an avid fan of college basket ball, especially the University of Maryland, loved scuba diving and swimming with the manatee, gardening; his Pepsi, cigarettes, and dark chocolate. He took great pride in his 1969 Chevrolet Chevelle Super Sport and so enjoyed his rides with Wayne. Don was especially proud of his family and never spoke a bad word about anyone. His favorite phrase to almost any situation, "It is what it is", will always be remembered.

Married for 37 years, he is survived by his loving wife, Phyllis Raymond Gilbert; his mother, Alma Gilbert; sister, Cheri Gilbert Steinbach and husband Wayne; brother Michael Gilbert and wife Linda; and children Jackie DiVita and husband Dominic , and Geoffrey Gilbert; and Granddaughter Alissa Gilbert and Great Grandson Ares; and Aunt, Carol Raines. His mother-in-law, Arlene Sailer Raymond, sister-in-law Debbie Raymond Leadore and husband Gary and niece Nicole, nephews Steven and wife Rania, and Great Niece Aleena, and Alexander and wife Amber. He leaves behind many beloved cousins and friends.

Services will be private. In lieu of flowers please donate to a charity of your choice in Memory of Don.

To send flowers to the family in memory of Donald Reese Gilbert, please visit our flower store.


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