Gerald “Gerry” Gilbert, 69, of Kent passed away on May 24th, 2023 at home in hospice care with his wife following a valiant fight against cancer.
Gerry was born on July, 13th 1953 to Bud & Ruth Gilbert in Renton, WA. The family moved to Burien where Gerry graduated from Highline High School in 1972. During this time, he met his high school sweetheart, Laine Coates. The two married on June 8th, 1974 & were able to celebrate 48 years together.
In the early years, Gerry enlisted in the U.S. Air Force. He served as a surgical technician while on active duty in Ohio & remained in the USAF reserve for another 8 years. Following his military service, he enrolled at Western Washington University & majored in psychology. Post-graduation, he began a job in the credit department of WESCO where he developed a knack for credit management. He became a certified credit executive & was an active member/leader of NACM for over 40 years. Gerry was also incredibly passionate about giving back to his community & was involved in a youth musical theater program, the Hi-Liners, for many years. He was able to perform every role imaginable & held many positions on the board of directors including serving as president.
While Gerry succeeded at various roles during his lifetime, the position he was most proud of was as a family man. Gerry’s love for his family was untouchable & inspirational. He was a loving & devoted husband to his wife & best friend, Laine. He provided the same dedication as a father to his two children, Rachel & David. He was able to be nurturing yet firm, optimistic yet realistic & always convey that the only barriers for his children’s future were the ones that they created for themselves. Because after all, they could achieve anything. He believed the same was true for his grandchildren who were the light of his life. Prior to his death, his focus was to retire, travel & play with all his kids.
Gerry was described by his colleagues as one of the “good guys.” He was motivated to always be the best he could be & influence those around him to do the same. He continued to carry himself with dignity, strength, love & a tad bit of stubbornness until his passing. The impact he had on others will be felt for generations & he will be missed dearly.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Bud & Ruth, as well as his older brothers, Ron & Ken. He is survived by his wife, Laine; his children: Rachel (Josh) & David (Jennifer); & his grandchildren: Cameron, Mia & Ethan.
Service arrangements have been shared privately with friends & family. A celebration of life will take place at the Tahoma National Cemetery with military honors.
Gerry, you will forever be missed. May his memory be a blessing.