Gilbert Illch, 85, of Longboat Key, Fla., formerly of Washington, D.C. and McLean, died after a lengthy illness on Aug. 12. He is survived by his loving wife of 62 years, Florence, two children, four grand children and three great grand children.
During WWII, while based in the Pacific theater, Gilbert was a staff sergeant in the US Army Air Corps, acting as a radio operator and aerial gunner in a B-24.
Gilbert was the President of the Aero Auto Company, specializing in Chevrolets and Electric vehicles, in Alexandria, VA for 40 years. He was a member of the Optimist Club and the Alexandria Chamber of Commerce, where he received the distinguished R. E. Knight Award for Service. He also headed a fundraising drive for the Red Cross of Alexandria.
Gilbert was on the Board of the Alexandria Hospital and also served as the chairman of the new Vocational Education Wing of the Alexandria High School System. Additionally, he was a representative of the Washington, DC Area Chevrolet Dealers Association to the National Planning Committee and served with the Virginia Automotive Dealers Association as their representative from Northern Virginia.
Florence and Gilbert moved to Longboat Key, FL in 1989. He was an avid golfer, loved fishing and volunteered much of his time to help others, also volunteering with Mote Marine and GWIZ.
Memorial contributions may be made to: The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Suncoast Chapter 3507 East Frontage Road, Suite 300, Tampa, FL 33607 or the Jewish Family & Children’s Service of Sarasota-Manatee, Inc. 2688 Fruitville Road, Sarasota, FL 34237