Dad as Master Of Lancaster Lodge 1980 To the Man I called Dad!

I miss dad already and wanted to put this site online in remembrance of him. You’ll find in the following pages of this site pictures and videos of dad, family and friends.

Dad was born April 2nd 1923 in Nashville Arkansas passed away on October 9th 2010 in Lancaster California. He was 87 years old.

Dad came from humble beginnings he lived through the great depression. Joined the Army at the age of 19 became a paratrooper and soldier in the 517th during WWII.

During his life dad was married three times and raised two families. He had a total of nine children that he raised five that were biological and four that were step children

Dad lived a full and happy life but also endured some very painful and sorrowful times in his life. He lost the love of his life his first wife Dorthy to cancer followed by the deaths of his two oldest sons Earnest and Barry. Even after the pain of losing the ones he loved so dear dad never lost his love for life, his sense of humor and left all that knew him with a smile.

Earnest Gilbert in the Army

A few years after the death of his first wife dad married his second wife Shirley who had four children prior to there marriage. In 1970 they had a son together Wade Gilbert.

Dad loved kids and being the person he was he always showed the love and care to his step children as if they were his own.

I was three years old when dad married my mom. Even though I wasn’t biologically related to him he was the only dad I ever knew. Dad and I spent thousands of hours together throughout the years driving to and from his jobs, going to lodge, driving around the valley talking on just about every topic you could imagine.

I don’t just feel lucky to have had Earnest Gilbert in my life and better yet as my father I Feel Blessed. We shared a love and bond that would rival any biological father son relationship that not even some of his own biological kids was ever lucky enough to enjoy.

Earnest Gilbert as a young man

I remember the time before dad and mom were married that there was one thing I wanted more than anything in the world and that was a father. I would tell my mother over and over that I wanted a dad. Then one day my mom met this man that was building a house across the street from where we lived. Soon she introduced this man to us kids and from the very instant I met him I just adored him. Dad and mom soon married and I was so happy that I now had a dad.

Soon after dad and mom were married I got my first lesson in discipline. Dad bought us kids an ice cream from the ice cream truck and when I got my ice cream I unwrapped it and threw the wrapper on the ground and dad said “Hey” pick that up and I responded I don’t have too as if nobody tells me what to do. Dad took out after me and I ran as fast as I could from him.  He caught me right away and with every step I took while running dad was swatting my behind and I was yelling Yes I Do, Yes I Do. Years later this was dads favorite story that he would tell when dad talked to someone about me.

Growing up I was always amazed at how many friends dad had. Even to this day I’ve never met someone that had as many friends as dad did. When we would go to the store or any place for that matter there would always be someone there that dad knew whether it was someone he knew from work, lodge or just old neighbors he once had. His friends would see him and go out of there way to come talk to dad.

Earnest Gilbert

Dad always had time to tell a friend a story and pretty soon he would have them laughing at some joke. Dad was gifted when it came to humor. People knew dad was a special person. At dads funeral I heard the Churchill brothers say ” You know after God made Curly he broke the mold” I thought wow they got that right. Dad was surely one of a kind.

In closing I would like say that Earnest Gilbert “the man I called dad” from the moment I met him to the day he passed he was my Hero and he will always be the Greatest Man I have ever known. I know that if I should be so lucky in my life that one day I become half the man that dad was then I will have accomplished a great feat. Dad I miss you already I love you and someday we shall meet again.


Watch Video Of Dad

If you knew Earnest Gilbert also known as “Curly Gilbert” and “Ernie Gilbert” and would like to leave a  comment or tell a story that you remember about our dad we would very much appreciate your comments. You can comment below.

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