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Dr. Kenneth Gillette

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Dr. Kenneth Gillette Obituary
Dr. Kenneth Gillette


Dr. Kenneth G. Gillette, 88, died Sunday, Oct. 27, 2013 at Israel Family Hospice House in Ames.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 2 at St. Cecilia Catholic Church in Ames. A wake service will be held at 9 a.m. Saturday in the church narthex.

Dr. Gillette was born April 25, 1925, in Cloquet, Minn., to Guy E. and Mary (Chapados) Gillette. He married Barbara S. Ross in West Lafayette, Ind., on April 28, 1962 and she survives.

He graduated from Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Grade School and from Cloquet High School in 1943. He served in the U.S. Army as a surgical technician for three years during World War II. Afterward, he was a bugler with a championship American Legion Drum and Bugle Corps in Cloquet, Minn.

He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Veterinary Medicine in 1952 from the University of Minnesota, graduating with distinction; and a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine in 1954, also from the University of Minnesota. During his undergraduate years, he served two years as Union Board president and was inducted into the Order of the Gopher.

In 1956, he began work at Purdue University's School of Agriculture, Department of Animal Science in West Lafayette, Ind., where he conducted research in virology, specializing in cattle. He received a Master of Science degree in Microbiology from Purdue in 1961, and a Ph.D. in Virology from Purdue in 1965.

From 1965 to 1970 he was a research virologist at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, Wis.

In 1970, he accepted a position in Ames with the National Animal Disease Center, Agricultural Research Services, United States Department of Agriculture, retiring in 1987 as a Veterinary Medical Officer.

Dr. Gillette authored and co-authored numerous studies in animal and plant diseases and held a patent with Purdue University for a medical supplement for beef cattle.

Dr. Gillette was a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association, Gamma Sigma Delta Honor Society of Agriculture and the Society of Sigma Xi, a scientific research society.

He was a longtime member of St. Cecilia Catholic Church in Ames and he and his wife were among the original residents of the Windsor Oaks retirement community, Ames.

He was preceded in death by his parents and two sisters, Donna Gellerman and Charlene Pepski.

In addition to his wife, Dr. Gillette is survived by numerous nieces and nephews and special friends, the Martha Bappe family of Ames, including his godson, Benjamin Bappe.

Memorials may be made to St. Cecilia Catholic Church in Ames, Ames Fire and Rescue, Mary Greeley Medical Center Emergency Medical Services, or the Israel Family Hospice House, all in Ames. Condolences and photos may be shared at


Published in Des Moines Register from Oct. 30 to Oct. 31, 2013
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