Lawrence Collier Gilman of Delta Junction, AK died on Aug. 11, 2018 of a heart attack.
Born April 16, 1960 in Hartford, CT, He was the son of Joseph Lawrence “Larry” Gilman and Ann Mather Gilman. Larry and his sister, Suzanne, grew up on campus and attended school at Westminster School. Larry met his wife, Susan Apling, when he was stationed at 4/9th Charlie Company (Airborne), Fort Wainwright, AK. They married in April 1988, and Larry adopted Aaron as his son.
Larry served his country in the United States Army faithfully for over 20 years. Larry started his military career in July of 1978 at the U. S. Military Academy, West Point, New York, and retired in October of 2002 at the U.S. Military Academy, West Point, New York, as Battalion Operations NCO. Larry served as First Sergeant at USARAK Northern Warfare Training Center, 1996 through 2001.
Larry received many decorations, medals, badges and citations: Meritorious Service Medal (4), Army Commendation Medal (6), National Defense Service Medal (2), Non Commissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbon with numeral 3, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon (3rd Award), Expert Marksmanship Qualification, Master Parachutist Badge, Parachutist Badge, Pathfinder Badge, Air Assault Badge, Drill Sergeant Identification Badge, Canadian Parachutist Badge.
He also received many diplomas. Westminster School Simsbury, CT 1978, 2 years college; U.S. Military Academy, West Point, NY 1978-1980, 1 ½ years college; Gettysburg College, Gettysburg PA, 1981-1983, Diploma; Basic Airborne Course, Fort Benning, GA, 1984, Diploma; Air Assault School, Fort Richardson, AK, 1986, Diploma; Canadian Army Airborne School, 1986, Graduate; Light (infantry) Leaders Course, Fort Benning, GA, 1986, Diploma; Primary Leadership Development Course, Fort Richardson, AK, 1987, Diploma; Pathfinder Course (forward area air traffic control), Fort Benning, GA 1988, Diploma; Jumpmaster Course, Fort Benning, GA, 1988, Diploma; Military Mountaineering Instructor Course, Ft Greely, AK 1990, Diploma; Winter Operations Instructor Course, Ft Greely, AK 1990, Diploma; Combat Lifesaver Course (First aid, CPR), Ft Greely, AK 1990, Diploma; Basic Non-Commissioned Officer Course, Fort Richardson, AK, 1991, Diploma; Avalanche Hazard Evaluation and Rescue, Alaska Mountain Safety Center, Anchorage, AK, 1991, Diploma; Advanced Non-Commissioned Officer Course, Fort Benning, GA, 1994, Diploma; Drill Sergeant School, Fort Leonard Wood, MO, 1994.
Larry distinguished himself by exceptionally meritorious service spanning a career of more than 20 years’ active military service in positions of increasing trust and responsibility, culminating as the Battalion S-3 Noncommissioned Officer-in-charge, 1st Battalion, 1st Infantry. His selfless dedication and outstanding performance as a Platoon Sergeant, First Sergeant, Drill Instructor, School Chief Instructor, and Operations Noncommissioned Officer distinguished him above his peers. Master Sergeant Gilman’s extraordinary contributions and exemplary performance of duty are in keeping with the finest traditions of military service and reflect great credit on him, the United States Military Academy, and the United States Army.
The Gilmans’ first duty station as husband and wife was Fort Campbell, KY. Larry was attached to the Pathfinder Detachment. They happily returned to Fort Greely, AK, in 1990, where Larry began a tour with Northern Warfare Training Center.
Larry enjoyed helping his friends and strangers in need and often gave his time, money, and support freely without thought of reward. He was a talented carpenter and took on many projects. He enjoyed gardening, cutting fire wood, and his pets Lu, Beauregard, Cleo, Annie, and Mider.
About 10 years ago, Larry was told to prepare for his death. His doctor said he had lung cancer and had about six weeks to live. That was when Larry made the decision to accept Jesus as his Savior. He was healed and went on to give God the credit.
Larry was a generous, loving, giving man. He made our lives complete. He was funny, intelligent, honorable, loyal, and committed. He had a commanding presence when he entered a room or a group. Larry loved hunting, but fishing – not so much. Larry enjoyed watching his son play sports, especially hockey. He encouraged and taught with fierce determination. He wanted our best efforts. He was a good father, husband, and friend. We will miss him.
Larry is survived by his wife Susan, of Delta Junction, AK; son Aaron Apling Gilman of Girdwood, AK; mother Ann Gilman of Simsbury, CT; sister Suzanne Gilman and her partner Gena Taylor of New York City; aunt Anne Collier of Wakefield, MA; cousins Matthew Collier and Elizabeth Collier of Wakefield MA and David Collier of Widomar, CA; sister-in-law Nancy Morgan and husband Jerry, brothers-in-law Kevin Apling of Fairbanks, AK and Ike and Jeana Apling of North Pole, AK.
A funeral service will be held on Aug 27 at 3 p.m. at the Gilman home, Mile 1400 Alaska Highway, Delta Junction, AK. You may bring a dish to share.
Condolences may be mailed to Gilman, P.O. Box 769, Delta Jct., AK 99737. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation in Larry’s name to the Chris Kyle Frog Foundation www.chriskylefrogfoundation.orgor the Wounded Warrior Project www.woundedwarriorproject.org.