Jon M. Gilbert ’62

Jon Marshall Gilbert, 80, died January 27, 2022, with his loving wife Linda by his side. He was born July 18, 1941, in Waterville Maine to the late Bernard and Eleanor (Marshall) Gilbert. Jon attended Waterville Senior High School and in 1962 he graduated from Maine Maritime Academy with a BS in Marine Engineering.

He sailed with the Merchant Marine for a few years, many times aboard the US registered container ship the SS Transglobe. He held a United States Coast Guard Third Engineers License, Steam and Motor Vessels of any horsepower.

Jon left shipping to begin a career that included testing nuclear submarines for General Dynamics in Quincy, Massachusetts, and work at the Maine Yankee Atomic Power Station for Stone & Webster Engineering. But an interview with Bechtel Corporation in 1974 brought him to his 25+-year career with Bechtel in San Francisco and on to San Diego. As a Quality Assurance Engineer and Manager, he developed monitoring programs for radioactive waste, site decontamination and decommissioning for sites across the US.

Although he moved to San Francisco, he always made sure to come back to Maine for the lobsters, the clams and family – in the summer! And he was always welcomed back with a traditional Maine lobster feed.

An avid sailor, Jon loved messing about in boats. He owned and cruised powerboats and sailboats, raced sailboats in San Francisco Bay and down the coast of California to Mexico. When he retired in 2003, five friends joined Jon and Linda to participate in the “Baja Ha Ha” and cruise his 43 foot sailing yacht Compass Rose to Mexico. After a few years of liveaboard cruising they returned to California. Compass Rose was replaced by the motor yacht Brilliant and trips to Catalina and the Channel Islands. Jon reconnected with the MMA Alumni Association, and he volunteered with the Anza-Borrego Desert State Park Paleontology Society in Borrego Springs, California, where he took up photogrammetry, 3D printing of fossils, and he obtained an FAA Certified Remote Pilots License so that he could fly drones to photograph fossil sites from the air.

He is survived by his wife, Linda, and his sister, Joan Grondin and her children Paula, Peggy, Barbara and Greg, and his brother Mike’s children, Laurie, Matt, and James, and numerous nieces and nephews.

Jon’s ashes were scattered at sea off the coast of San Diego by his family, friends, and former Bechtel coworkers on a lovely Southern California morning.

In thanks for the many opportunities Jon’s Maine Maritime Academy degree brought him, he established The Jon Marshall Gilbert ’62 Endowed Scholarship Fund to provide an annual full-tuition scholarship to a student.