Bert Richard Gillette, husband, father and friend, passed way peacefully at his home on Sunday, May 26, 2013. A Memorial Service will be held at 10:30 A.M. on Saturday, June 22, 2013 at Grace United Methodist Church, Brooklyn, with Rev. John Dodds officiating. Inurnment will be in Forest City, Iowa at a later date. There will be no visitation. Memorials may be directed to the Bert Gillette Scholarship Fund. Kloster Funeral Home, Brooklyn is in charge of arrangements.
Bert is survived by his wife of 47 years, Kathryn; his children, Richard (Jennifer) of Pinole, CA, grandson Matthew Gillette (Marissa), and great-grandson Milo; Kurt (Mary) of Springville, granddaughter Nichole Jack of Cedar Rapids; and Diane (Susan Eppel) of Waddell, AZ. He was preceded in death by his parents, and brothers, Frank and George.
Bert Richard Gillette was born December 16, 1922 in Forest City, Iowa, the son of Bert and Hilda Shefloe Gillette. He spent his youth in Ellington Township on his father’s farm. He spoke with pride of his Saturday night pugilistic skills on the square in Forest City, taking on all comers from Forest City and the surrounding communities. He graduated from Forest City High School, and then attended Waldorf College. He married Marie Ayres on September 28, 1943. She passed away July 21, 2010
Bert served in the U.S. Air Force from 1942-46 during World War II. When he returned, he earned a degree in accounting from the University of Iowa in 1949 and his law degree in 1952. Bert was employed as a regional claims manager at State Farm Insurance Company, and later was corporate counsel/vice president of State Auto Insurance Company. Bert went into private practice in 1960 and maintained a law office in Brooklyn until his retirement in 1994. He was united in marriage to Kathryn Deusler on July 16, 1966.
Bert was a 50-year member of the Masons, the Masonic Consistory, and the Kaaba Shrine in Davenport. He also was a 50-year member of the Brooklyn American Legion. He was a member of Grace United Methodist Church in Brooklyn.
Bert enjoyed pheasant hunting, fishing, and reading. He was an avid checker and cribbage player and had one “perfect” hand. He taught his children cribbage and chess while ice fishing in a cabin on Lake MilleLac. He said “Fiddler Jones” from Spoon River Anthology often reminded him of himself.
During his last year of life, he was lovingly cared for by his daughter Diane and his wife Kathryn. He is now one for the ages.