Fiddletown, CA Change


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Date of Birth
Friday, 6 Apr 1951
Date of Death
Tuesday, 8 Jul 2014 (Age 63)
Keith Gilbertson was born April 6, 1951, in Rhode Island, at the Quonset Point Naval Air Station Hospital, and died peacefully on July 8, 2014 in Jackson, Calif., surrounded by his family.
As a child, Keith lived in Rhode Island, Texas, New Jersey and Massachusetts, where he learned to love the great outdoors. He graduated from Littleton High School, Massachusetts, in 1969. He entered the US Navy during the Vietnam Conflict, serving from 1969 until 1975. Keith studied at the nuclear power school in Charleston, South Carolina, and was stationed in Honolulu, Hawaii. He worked as a machinist's mate aboard the nuclear submarine, USS Theodore Roosevelt. After being honorably discharged from the Navy, Keith ran a successful landscape business in the Montecito area of Santa Barbara County, creating elaborate, artistic designs for some of the largest estates in the region. He then moved to Sacramento, where he was groundskeeper for the Del Paso Country Club. Later he moved to Amador County and worked for Mace Meadow Golf Course and volunteered at the Interfaith Food Bank in Amador County.
Keith was an avid outdoors man and athlete, excelling in water skiing and snow skiing, ice-skating and roller-skating, sailing, hiking and camping. He was also an artist, poet, musician and talented landscape architect. His family and many friends knew him to be a dynamic, funny and imaginative man who delighted in working hard and playing even harder. He was second to none in his ability to weave tall tales, create beautiful art projects in many different media, including woodwork, painting, drawing and jewelry. He traveled extensively, often in the company of his beloved K-9 companions.
He is survived by his parents, Don and Norma, of Jackson; four sisters, Donna Miller (former spouse Harry “Spud”), of Lincoln, Mass.; Gloria Lantz (husband Kelly), of Pioneer, Calif.; Patty Gilbertson, of Lake Tahoe, Calif.; Karin Lightfoot (husband Robb), of Palo Cedro, Calif., a daughter, Toni Rivera, of Indiana, three grandchildren, six nephews and five nieces.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made online to the Amador Interfaith Food Bank at
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