Walter Gilbertson

Walter Gordon Gilbertson, 90, of Winona, MN passed away Saturday, September 9, 2023 at Benedictine Saint Anne Nursing Home in Winona, MN. A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Thursday, October 19 at the Grace Presbyterian Church in Winona, MN.

Visitation will be held Wednesday, October 18 from 4-7 p.m. at Fawcett Junker Funeral Home in Winona, MN and Thursday, October 19 from 10 a.m. until the service. Interment with military honors will be at the Minnesota State Veterans Cemetery, Preston, MN at a later date.

Walt was born December 20, 1932 at home on a family farm in Allamakee County to Cora (Fossum) and Arthur Gilbertson. He attended a country school until moving to Waukon where he graduated from Waukon High School. He was confirmed at Old West Paint Creek Lutheran Church, Waukon.

He entered the U.S. Air Force and was honorably discharged after four years of service. He went on to receive his bachelor’s degree from Iowa State College and his master’s degree from the University of Wisconsin-Stout.

While in the Air Force and stationed in Rapid City, SD, he met Dorothy Drysdale and they were married February 4, 1956 in Chicago, IL. After graduation from Iowa State College they moved to Winona, MN where Walt taught for 31 years in the Industrial Arts department in the Winona Public School system. They had three sons.  During some summer breaks he took school census and did roofing with his friend, Don Thiesse.

Walt was a member of the local SPEBSQSA (Barbershoppers) chapter participating in the chorus and several quartets for over 50 years. An active member of Grace Presbyterian Church, he served on various committees, sang in the church choir, and did volunteer work. He worked with Lou Jappe and others to install the current pipe organ and helped to service the organ for several years, and he also spent many hours helping with the construction of the addition to the church.

Walt enjoyed his time spent with the local Sons of Norway where he directed a chorus that sang Norwegian songs. He took great pride in tracing his family genealogy and building off the work of his cousin, mother and sister, expanding a family tree for the Gilbertson, Fossum and Bakkum families.

He enjoyed woodworking, gardening, fishing, remodeling his house, traveling around the U.S. and Europe with his family and tour groups, and camping with his family. He volunteered for SEMCAC, WVS and the Red Cross. He was a Twins and Vikings fan.

Walt was very proud of the accomplishments of his sons and grandchildren and enjoyed being a part of their lives.

Walter is survived by his wife, Dorothy; his sons, Jim, Dan and Chuck; and his grandchildren, Jessica, Danielle and Tyler. He was preceded in death by his parents; his brothers, Gaylen and Harry; and his sister, Emily.

Services have been entrusted to Fawcett Junker Funeral Home & Crematory, Winona, MN. Online condolences can be left at