Dr. Donald Gibson, 86
Dr. Donald Gibson, of Antigo, Co-Founder of Raptor Education Group, Inc.,(REGI) died Nov. 1, 2019 at home under the care of LeRoyer Hospice, his family and his turkey – Grace. He was born on July 15, 1933, in Laguna Beach, California the youngest son of John and Gertrude Hevener Gibson. He married Marjorie Cahak on December 19, 1975, in Orange County California. She survives.
Don was raised in Orange County California. He graduated from Covina High School and received his bachelor’s degree and medical degree from the University of Southern California (USC).
After graduating from medical school, Don joined the United States Navy Medical Corps. He served as a flight surgeon overseas during the Viet Nam War. Don completed a residency in pathologist at Bethesda Naval Hospital in Maryland. After serving 13 years in the Navy and attaining the rank of Commander, Don left military service. He returned to California. He worked as a pathologist for many years in Orange County.
In 1990, Don and Marge moved back to Antigo and founded REGI. A wildlife rehabilitation and education facility for native bird species. It was a lifestyle Don completely embraced.
At the same time, Don was employed as a pathologist with Associates in Pathology of Wausau. Through the pathology group he worked at several hospitals in Central Wisconsin including Langlade Hospital and Aspirus Wausau Hospital. He retired in 1997, to spend more time with family, following the birth of his first grandchild.
Ever the adventurer, Don excelled in many aspects of life. Anything he wanted to do he did and did well often surprising his family with unexpected new interests such a when he arrived home with a hot air balloon and announced that both he and Marge were going to become hot air balloon pilots and they did. Don loved growing orchids, raising racing homer pigeons and a host of other things that interested him including his love and fascination of astronomy.
Don love active sports such as long-distance running and bicycling, downhill skiing, playing tennis, and swimming in the ocean. Don had a fascination with being in the air which led him to receive his private pilot’s license while in college and later enjoyed flying his powered parachute into his early 80’s.
Survivors including his wife Marge are a son, Darrell Gibson, Phoenix, Arizona; two daughters, Katrinka (Greg) Spiro, Jacksonville, Florida, Sarah (Jon) Petroskey, Antigo; six grandchildren Brock Gibson, Alex Spiro, Hunter and Madalyn Petroskey, Nick and Caleb McAdams; a sister, Carol (Philip) Fraley, Pittsburg, Pennsylvania; a sister-in-law, Rosalie (George) Blumenschein, Wilson, Michigan; a brother-in-law, William (Carole) Cahak, Wisconsin Rapids; many nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents, a sister Marjorie Podell; a brother, David Gibson,
A funeral service will be held on Wednesday November 6, 2019 at 11 a.m. at Bradley Funeral Home. Burial will take place in the Bohemian National Cemetery in Neva where Antigo Veterans will conduct military honors. A rehabilitated bald eagle will be released after the committal services.
Visitation will be Tuesday from 3:30 to 7 p.m. at the funeral home and on Wednesday from 10 a.m. until the time of serivces.
In leiu of flowers memorials may be directed to REGI P.O. Box 481 Antigo, WI 54409.