Obituary: David B. Gaylord, 1931-2021 | Obituaries | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

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Obituary: David B. Gaylord, 1931-2021

Former Army captain and banker loved woodworking and keeping connected with loved ones

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David B. Gaylord - COURTESY PHOTO
  • Courtesy Photo
  • David B. Gaylord

David B. Gaylord, 89, of Burlington, Vt., passed away peacefully at home on March 2, 2021, surrounded by his family following a six-month battle with glioblastoma. David was born on September 28, 1931, in Northfield, Vt., to Richard H. and Irene (Biorklund) Gaylord, the youngest of three children. His mother passed away soon after his birth. His father was remarried to Elsie Ehlert from Brooklyn, N.Y., who was the woman David knew as his mother.

David grew up in Northfield and went on to graduate from the University of Vermont in 1953. After graduation, he enlisted in the U.S. Army and served in Germany between 1953 and 1955. He was in the Vermont National Guard from 1955 to1957, leaving as a captain. When he returned to Vermont from Germany in 1955, he started dating Carol Sunderland, and they were married on June 23, 1956, in the St. Albans First Baptist Church.

David and Carol settled into their “home for life” in the New North End of Burlington and soon had three children. He started his 35-year banking career at the Vermont Federal Bank in Burlington, retiring as executive vice president in 1990. David was involved in many organizations over the years. He was an active member of the Burlington First Baptist Church. He served on boards and committees including Burlington Meals on Wheels, Converse Home, Vermont Baptist Home, United Way Fund Campaign, VT League of Savings and Loan Association, and Vermont Bankers Association Executive Committee. Upon David’s retirement, he volunteered for years in the Tax Aide program, running the local program for the AARP. David suffered a heart attack in 1993 and underwent quadruple bypass surgery. He soon became a dedicated participant at the UVM Medical Center’s Cardiac Rehab Program for 26 years (only stopping attendance when COVID-19 closed the gym). He was very thankful for the guidance of Dr. Ades and his health care team, and grateful for the many good friends he made among the other participants.

David may have been a banker for 35 years, but his true loves were woodworking and fixing things. David was not content unless he was working on some project, big or small. These included overseeing multiple additions and updates to the Gaylord home, building handy step stools for every member of the family, making wooden cut-outs of classic houses he would give as gifts, and working on any item that needed fixing or improvement. He truly had an engineer’s brain that he put to great use around the home.

Throughout David’s retirement, he made a great effort to stay connected to his old classmates, past coworkers, neighbors, friends from cardiac rehab and extended family. He quickly learned the use of email for easy communication and never hesitated to pick up the phone to call someone just to chat or tell them some new discovery he had just made. He was the one checking in on the cardiac rehab friend that had not shown up in the last week and the one planning the next high school reunion. David was well known in his neighborhood for “keeping an eye” on things. He truly valued all the relationships he had over the years and made a great effort to sustain them. David’s other enjoyment in retirement was keeping up on all of his grandchildren. He was a wonderful grandfather who attended sporting events and was always willing to help on any school or home project.

David is survived by his wife of 64 years, Carol; son Peter Gaylord (wife Vicki) of Burlington, Vt., daughter Sarah Narkewicz (husband Brian) of Milton, Vt.; daughter Lucia Ryan (husband Tom) of Shelburne, Vt.; eight grandchildren, Alanna Gaylord, Ethan Gaylord, Jesse Narkewicz (wife Alison), David Narkewicz (wife Katie), Rachel Narkewicz, Maggie Albertson (husband Mark), Ella Ryan and Will Ryan; three great-grandchildren, Luke, Aubrey and Calvin Narkewicz; sister-in-law Miriam Sargent; and many nieces and nephews. David was predeceased by his sister Alma Synakowski of Utica, N.Y., and his brother Richard Gaylord of Huntsville, Ala.

David and Carol are grateful to Dr. Frank Landry for the many years of helpful and compassionate medical care. They are thankful to the UVM Medical Hospice team for all the help and guidance through these last months. The family also wishes to thank all the friends and neighbors for the love and support that have been provided to David and Carol over these past months.

Please consider a donation in David’s memory to Burlington First Baptist Church, 81 St. Paul St., Burlington, VT 05401 or UVM Home Health and Hospice, 1110 Prim Rd., Colchester, VT 05446.

Services for David will be private and at the convenience of the family.

Arrangements are in care of Corbin and Palmer Funeral Home.

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