LISBON, Ohio (MyValleyTributes) – Gilbert (Gibby) Bartha, Jr. died peacefully with his daughters at his side, Friday, April 9, 2021, at Community Care Center of Alliance. He is together again with his wife, Kathy (Weber), who passed away on Christmas Eve, just four months ago.
Gibby was born on July 6, 1941 to the late Gilbert (Gibby), Sr. and Louise (Straub) Bartha.
He is survived by his daughters, Sheryl (Mark) Hawthorne of Lisbon and Julie (Kim) Bell of Salem. He also leaves five grandchildren, Avery Hawthorne, Josh (Ashley) Bell, Robyn (Joe) Bell, Dana (Jordan) Faudree and Meg Bell and her fiancé, Tyler Medina and five great-grandsons, Austin, Lucas, Kyle, Levi and Zachary. He is also survived by two “brothers”, Dan (Nancy) Weber of Lisbon and Mark Weber of Jefferson and their families, to whom he was always Uncle “Biggie.”
Gibby was a 1959 graduate of Salem High School where he participated in band. During this time, he also played in the American Legion Band and was a member when they won the National Championship in 1958. Gibby was also the first one to paint the Quaker Sam logo on the basketball court in the new high school.
Gibby enlisted in the Navy in 1959 and served aboard the USS Tidewater as a Torpedo Man, stationed at Norfolk, Virginia, until his honorable discharge in 1961. The Tidewater toured the Mediterranean and those were some of his fondest memories.
As a family, we enjoyed many summers in the Norfolk and Virginia Beach areas.
Gibby started his career at Alliance Machine and eventually became a foreman at GM Lordstown, from where he retired after 33 years.
After retirement, Gibby and Kathy spent several winters as Snow Birds in Bonita Springs, Florida, together with many Salem friends and many more new ones. When his Parkinson’s would no longer allow that, they moved together to Assisted Living at Copeland Oaks, in 2019.
Gibby enjoyed his family most of all, playing cards and having picnics and laughing! He enjoyed “riding the rails” with Kathy, camping and fishing, even when his youngest granddaughter caught a bigger fish!
He was a member of Emmanuel Lutheran Church of Salem where he had served as Council President and as a member of Property Division and where he and Kathy sang in the Senior Choir.
He was also a member of Branch 19 of Alliance of Transylvanian Saxons, the Parkinson’s Support Group at Emmanuel, and the Sebring Model Railroad Club, where he could enjoy his other passion. He built a large HO scale model railroad in the basement of their condo in Lisbon, complete with lights and sounds and “interesting” people and settings!
Gibby will always be remembered as a fun-loving, hard-working guy. He could build just about anything from wood, always to perfection and helped his “sons” build and repair many times, always with a good time and a lot of laughs.
Gibby and Kathy will be remembered, together, hopefully around the Fourth of July, his favorite holiday.
Memorials to Gibby can be made to Emmanuel Lutheran Church, 251 S. Broadway, Salem, OH 44460.
And when you’re watching fireworks this year and maybe listening to a great band, think of Gibby and have a good laugh. He would love that.
Arrangements have been handled, with love, by his nephew, Gregg Weber, of Weber Funeral Home in Lisbon.
A television tribute will air Tuesday, April 13 at the following approximate times: 6:43 a.m. WYTV, 9:32 a.m. on WKBN, 10:58 a.m. on FOX and 8:12 p.m. on MyYTV.