Marlin Gilman Obituary

Marlin Eugene Gilman
Marlin Eugene Gilman

December 4, 1937 - August 12, 2022
Born in Earlham, Iowa
Resided in Earlham, Iowa
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Marlin Eugene Gilman, 84, died Friday, August 12, 2022 at Wesley Acres in Des Moines. A Celebration of Life Reception and Service will be held from 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm Saturday, October 15, 2022 at the Earlham Community Center with the service beginning at 1:30 pm. The Community Center is located at 150 East 1st Street in Earlham, Iowa.

Marlin was born December 4, 1937 at the family farm near Earlham to Everett and Mabel (Boyle) Gilman. He suffered from Rheumatic Fever as a child, which developed into severe Rheumatoid Arthritis. Although the disease was debilitating, Marlin did not let it stop him. He rose to each challenge with a smile on his face.

He attended Penn #5 Country school until it closed. His rheumatoid arthritis progressed to where he needed a wheel chair and assistance for his daily routine. A neighbor encouraged him to get his Amateur Radio license to connect with other folks while homebound. He earned his Novice license in 1961 and quickly moved up to earn his Advanced license in 1974. His call sign is WAØAUX. He was also a part of the Iowa Handiham’s serving as the President of the group in 1980. As a Ham Radio operator, he often passed along messages between service members and their families and spoke to individuals all over the world. He was known for sending special holiday and birthday greetings to family and friends. He was a member of Coon Valley Amateur Ham Radio Club for over 45 years.

Marlin worked with Camp Sunnyside run by Easter Seals. He would share information about using the ham radio with other handicapped individuals to encourage them to reach outside and meet new people. He said I am happy to be a part of an organization that helps others like myself open a door to a new world that takes me for what I can do and not for what I can’t. He also attended Summer Camps all over the state with Camp Sunnyside.

Later in life, he worked part time as the Activity Director for the South Care Center in Winterset. He enjoyed making the residents days a little bit brighter.

He was a beloved Uncle to many nieces and nephews. He had a golf cart that allowed him to easily travel around the family farm. Family visiting would pile on the cart and he would drive around the farm for hours. They sang songs, learned about plants and ducked down when he got too close to the trees.

Marlin was proud to live independently on his family’s Century Farm.

Survivors include his sisters: Patricia Greenwell of Sun City, Arizona, Beverly Powell of Des Moines; and many nieces and nephews and cousins. Marlin was preceded in death by his parents, Mabel and Everett Gilman; and brother, Roger Gilman.

Memorial contributions may be made to his sister, Beverly.

Online condolences are welcome at





Celebration of Life Reception & Service
Earlham Community Center
150 East First Street
Earlham, IA US 50072
Saturday, October 15, 2022
1:00 PM - 4:00 PM
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To the family c/o Westover Funeral Home
6337 Hickman Rd.
Des Moines, Iowa USA 50322
For Linz's children's education fund.