Donald H. Gibbons, 80
Nov. 2, 1936 — Sept. 5, 2017
Donald H. Gibbons, 80, passed away peacefully, surrounded by his family, after a long struggle with lymphoma Sept. 5, 2017, in his West Bend home. He was born Nov. 2, 1936, in Sheboygan, to Harvey and Antoinette (nee LeMahieu) Gibbons.
Don is survived by his wife of 58 years, Bobette (nee Mulock); children, Tracy (Matt) Howard, Teri (Fred) Kandel and Tim (Shannon) Gibbons; grandchildren, Joe, Jake, Nate, Xander, MollyClaire and Eviana; and brother, Wes (Joan) Gibbons. He was preceded in death by his sister, Patricia Okey. He is further survived by many nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.
He enjoyed working on his home and the family cottage; he was a master of woodworking, including cabinetry, furniture and countless other items he released from the confines of ordinary lumber. Other pastimes included working outdoors, cutting wood and perpetually battling buckthorn. He had MacGyver-like skills in repairing most anything using only a paperclip and car battery, and his razor sharp memory always wowed the family, leaving us only to wonder if the event in question had occurred 20 years ago on a Wednesday or a Thursday.
Professionally, Don taught electronics for 32 years in the West Bend School District. He lent his voice as an announcer for sporting events, led many extra-curricular clubs and touched the lives of countless students.
Don and Bobbi loved time with friends in West Bend and at the “summer camp”-like retirement community in Texas, where they spent winters. He blessed RV park residents with his line dancing instruction, humor and willingness to help with anything that needed repair. Music played a huge part in Don’s life. He became an accomplished percussionist at an early age and enjoyed sharing his talent in swing bands and community theater orchestras. He was also famous for playing “air drums” at family events and parties.
The greatest joy of Don’s life was his family. He and Bobbi loved spending time with Tracy and Matt in Chicago, Teri and Fred in West Bend, and helping Tim and Shannon with their house in Delafield. He immensely enjoyed his grandchildren and they, him.
In the end he was best known for his unparalleled kindness, selflessness and amazing hugs. He will be missed.
A memorial service will be at 5:30 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 10, at Fifth Avenue United Methodist Church (323 S. Fifth Ave., West Bend, WI 53095) with the Rev. Clarissa Martinelli presiding. Visitation will be at church Sunday, Sept. 10, 2017 from 3:30-5:15 p.m.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations in Don’s memory be made to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, www.lls.org.
The Phillip Funeral Home of West Bend is assisting the family: 262-338-2050 or www.phillipfuneralhome.com.