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Donald F. Gaiser, MD

May 20, 1933 - November 9, 2017


Don Gaiser passed away unexpectedly yet peacefully Thursday, November 9th in Salem, OR. He will be remembered for his kindness, intelligence, sense of humor, and compassion. A celebration of life will be held at 2 p.m. on Friday, November 17th at First Presbyterian Church at 770 Chemeketa St. NE in Salem.

 Born May 20, 1933 to Paul and Miriam Gaiser, Don graduated from Vancouver High School in 1951, spent two years at Clark Community College where his father was President, graduated from University of Washington in 1955, and U.W. Medical School in 1959 as a surgeon. He was a loyal member of the Beta Theta Pi Fraternity. It was at the U.W. that he met his wife and partner for life, Nadine Willard. They just celebrated 60 years of marriage.

 To complete his medical training, Don was an intern at Cleveland Metropolitan Hospital, a resident at University of Rochester Medical Center/Strong Memorial Hospital, and served at Nellis U.S. Air Force Base in Las Vegas. He began private practice in Salem, Oregon in 1966 and retired in 1998. He was revered in the medical community and known for excellence in his field.

 Don was committed to giving back to community and was an example to his family. He was on the Board of Trustees at Salem Hospital for 10 years. He also served on the Board of the Salem Chamber of Commerce, the Salem School District Budget Committee, the Community School Steering Committee, United Way Board, and was on the Board and President of Illahe Hills Country Club.

 Don and Nadine purchased a home at Black Butte Ranch in central Oregon in 1974 where they enjoyed decades of vacations with their children and grand children. They went to Maui each year, which Don loved. His interests included golf, fly fishing, outdoor recreation, sports, and fostering relationships with friends and family.

 He is survived by his wife Nadine, his children Susan Gudgell (Wally), Beth Sheehan (Chris Walton), Gretchen Odegaard (Bill), grandchildren Jessica, Daniel, Jo, Annie and Rory, and step grandchildren Orion, Tori, David, and Ally. His final week was wonderful, renewing friendships at a U.W. reunion, talking with children and grandchildren, and traveling with Nadine. Remembrance donations are suggested at the Marion County Food Bank https://www.marionpolkfoodshare.org/ or the charity of your choice.

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What a wonderful friend, surgeon, and helpmate.  Norma and Bob Cochran