David Appleton Gibson, age 96, of Hadley, Mass., died on Thursday, Aug. 22, 2013, after a brief illness.
He was the husband of the late Margaret Fay (Weishaar) Gibson, with whom he made a home in Coventry for 52 years. David was born on Dec. 6, 1916, in Evanston, Ill., the son of the late Hamilton and Mary W. Gibson. He attended Evanston public schools, graduating from Evanston Township High School in 1936. He enrolled in Dartmouth College, where he was known as Pete, as a member of the Class of 1940, but interrupted his education to volunteer for Selective Service. David served his country honorably throughout World War II, first as a private soldier, then as an infantry officer in the 79th Infantry Division, and finally as an intelligence officer on the staff of XV Corps, where he participated in the campaigns of the European Theater of Operations from the Normandy breakout to the Central Europe campaign. His war ended in Salzburg, Austria, in May 1945. After completing his A.B. in government at Dartmouth in 1947, David worked as a staff reporter for the Greenfield (Mass.) Recorder through 1950, then as an award-winning journalist for the Hartford (Conn.) Times. He was business editor of the Times when it ceased publication in 1976. David spent the last five years of his professional career in corporate communications with the Travelers Corp. David joined the Second Congregational Church of Coventry in 1975 and remained a member all his life. He was a deacon and a choir member, and served on numerous church committees. He was a member and officer of the Coventry Lions Club, a founding member of the Coventry Veterans of Foreign Wars Post, a director of the Porter Library Association, and a director of the Central Cemetery Association. He also served on the Coventry Board of Education. At Dartmouth, he was a member of Alpha Delta Phi fraternity and the Sphinx Senior Society. David loved to read and to follow business and financial news, and was an avid jazz enthusiast and fan of WFCR's Jazz á la mode. Although a Cubs fan from boyhood, he nonetheless became an upstanding citizen of Red Sox Nation after relocating to Hadley, Mass., in 2002.
Besides his beloved "Ta" and his parents, David was predeceased by his older brothers, Harold H. Gibson Jr. and Arthur H. Gibson. He leaves his daughter, Rosemary G. Ryan, and son-in-law, Robert M. Ryan of Hadley, Mass.; and granddaughter, Hannah Rose Ryan, and her partner, Christopher Collins, of Somerville, Mass. In addition, David leaves many grieving neighbors, extended family members, and friends, some of whom he has corresponded with for decades. The pen is silenced, but the words live on.
Following a private interment, a memorial service will be held at the Second Congregational Church of Coventry at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 31, 2013.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Second Congregational Church of Coventry
Obituary and memorial register at
Douglass Funeral Home
87 North Pleasant Street Amherst, MA 01002
Published in Journal Inquirer from Aug. 27 to Aug. 31, 2013