John B. Gilmore

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John B. Gilmore (Doc), 96, of Oxford, Conn., formally of Elkader, passed away at CT Hospice on Oct. 14, 2021. He was born April 3, 1925, in New Bedford, Mass., to John B. and Gerogianna (Bazinet) Gilmore.


After graduating from high school in 1942, John enlisted in and entered the U.S. Navy on Aug. 1, 1942. He was proud to have served during WWII. On April 30, 1946, he was honorably discharged as a Pharmacist’s Mate, First Class. He was months shy of reclassification to 1st Class Petty Officer, but he longed to be with his wife, the former Virginia Lee of Osterdock, whom he married on Sept. 24, 1945. They settled in Iowa, and John enrolled in pre-dental studies at Loras College in Dubuque, before entering the University of Iowa School of Dentistry. 


After his graduation, Doc, as he became known, and his wife Ginny established a dental practice in Elkader, where they raised three children and became involved in the community. Always a curious man, he enjoyed hunting, fishing, gardening and problem solving to improve the efficiency of daily living. He was a founding member of the Elkader Golf Club and the Carter House Museum, where he and Ginny made numerous donations. He was proud to be a lifelong member of the VFW and served as commander of the Elkader Post, but his biggest pleasure was to encourage his children in their school and athletic endeavors. Doc was a kind and generous man with a quick, dry wit and a twinkle in his blue eyes. His steadfast care of his dear Ginny during her prolonged illness exemplified the strength unique to his generation.


Doc is survived by three children, James of Bynum, Mont., J.L. of Phoenix, Ariz., and Mary (Steve) Sokol of Oxford, Cont., with whom he made his home for the past four years; five grandchildren, Steve (Aileen) Sokol and Adam (Robin) Sokol of Connecticut, John Gilmore of Montana, Sarah Gilmore of South Carolina and Jed of Arizona; seven great-grandchildren, Stephen, Jackson, Sloane, Adam and Shane Sokol of Connecticut and Jayden and Madison of Montana; a nephew James Gersin and niece Cathy Morochnick.


He was predeceased by his parents, wife, infant son (Luke) and sister Elaine Gersin.


Mass of Christian Burial will be at 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 9, at St. Joseph Catholic Church, Elkader, with Rev. John Haugen as the celebrant. There will be a visitation from 9 a.m. until time of Mass at the church on Tuesday.


Burial with military rites will be at St. Joseph Catholic Church Cemetery, Elkader.


Attendees are asked to observe Covid-19 protocols.


Memorial donations can be made to Sister of St. Francis, 3390 Windsor Ave., Dubuque, IA 52001 or Carter House Museum, 102 Second St. SE, Elkader, IA 52043.


Leonard-Grau Funeral Home and Cremation Service, Elkader, is helping the family with the arrangements.

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