John Gelderd

John B. Gelderd, age 77, passed away on August 5, 2017. Family and friends are invted to come celebrate his life at a memorial service at 10 a.m. Saturday, August 12, 2017 at Christ United Methodist Church in College Station.
On September 21, 1939, John Gelderd was born in Wasquehal, France during a WWII German bombing raid. His father was an American who was employed by International Harvester, a company that was building supplies for the Allies. Due to the unrest in Europe and sensing that this American family would not be looked upon kindly by the Germans, they managed to leave Europe on one of the last ships available before the German blockade. They moved to Chicago and upon his father’s retirement the family relocated to Clearwater, Florida where John and his brothers grew up.
Upon high school graduation, John joined the Air Force and worked as an electrical technician with the Strategic Air Command (SAC). As his time for discharge drew near, his service was extended due to the Cuban Missile crisis. After 4 ½ years, he was honorably discharged.
He enrolled in the University of Florida where he received his Bachelor of Science degree and in 1972 received a PhD in Neuroscience at Schand’s Teaching Hospital. From 1972-1977 he was employed by the Louisiana State University Medical School. There he met and married his wife of 40 years, Laura. After one week of marriage they moved to College Station to help start the new medical school at Texas A&M .
While there, he proudly served on the executive committee for the Faculty Senate. He was also instrumental in establishing the Neuroscience curriculum for the College of Medicine. Before retiring in 2009, he rose to be the interim head of the Dept. of Neuroscience and Experimental Therapeutics. During his 32 year career at TAMU, Dr. Gelderd received numerous teaching awards and upon retirement was awarded the prestigious title of Professor Emeritus.
John is survived by his wife of 40 years, Laura; daughter, Jennifer Holm and husband Carlton of Georgetown, Texas; daughter, Julie Barkman and husband Wade of College Station, Texas; brother, Edward, of College Station; and his much loved grandson and namesake, Cooper John, son of Jennifer and Carlton.
He was preceded in death by a daughter, Lisa Marie.
The family would like to extend special and heartfelt thanks for their excellent care and support to Scott and White physicians Juddi Yeh, David Hackethorn, Bill Rayburn, and Bill and Jacquelyn Covington.
Memorial contributions may be sent to Christ United Methodist Church- Music Ministry, 4201 St Hwy 6 S, College Station, TX 77845 or Hospice Brazos Valley, 502 W. 26th St., Bryan, Texas 77803.
In addition, the family would like to acknowledge the incredible love and support we have received from our very special friends: Bill and Sharon Premaza of Venice, Florida, Tom and Polly McRae, of Punta Gorda, Florida, John and Gail Pipes of Destin, Florida, Adriano and Vancene Farinola of College Station, Texas and Judy Malazzo of Bryan, Texas. We couldn’t have made it through this without you.




  2. I wish to express my deepest sympathy to John’s Family. We have all lost a good friend and wise counselor. I worked with John many years at Texas A&M College of Medicine. We struggled together on reform of the Curriculum and he was at the vanguard pushing for change. We laughed, cringed, and celebrated together. He always knew “when to hold em’ and when to fold em'”.

    John tried on many occasions to get us together to play golf, but something always came up. How I wish I had that opportunity now.

  3. My deepest sympathy to John’s family. We have lost a good friend, esteemed colleague, and wise counselor. Godspeed. John.

  4. It is difficult to express the gratitude and appreciation I have for the few short years of my life that I had the opportunity and honor to witness and be a part of such a wonderful family as The Gelderds. I remember John always had fatherly advice for me and served as a positive role model in my life. I respected and admired him for being such a good father and husband. May God bless his family during this difficult time.

  5. I remember a great man that always had words of knowledge and advice for a young boy in his college years. Though I spent time with him for a short while, he forever impacted my life. Thank you John. Prayers and condolences to his family.

  6. My thoughts are with Dr. Geldard’s family. He made an incredible impression upon me in medical school. He was an incredible educator and everybody loved his drawing of neuroanatomy with both hands! My most memorable moments with Dr. Geldard were one-on-one, when he challenged, encouraged and inspired me. He asked me to write post-it notes of self affirmations and recite them every morning. He really cared so much about each of his students. It was an honor to have met him and to learn from him.

  7. Although this is belated, as we just found out it is with a heavy heart that I offer my deepest sympathies for your loss .. John was my fathers best friend and was there for my fathers funeral services in 2004 Rest In Peace John you and the “Murhole” can run together again!

  8. I’ve just sadly and very belatedly learned of Yonnie’s (John’s) passing. For awhile I was a brother-in-law, a school mate (UF), a fellow Scientist-in-the-Sea classmate (USNSRDL) and we had a solid bond although we were not always in frequent contact especially during his later years when I was very active/away in the Middle East. There aren’t adequate words and I will forever miss him.

  9. I’ve just learned of Yonnie’s passing and there aren’t adequate words, He was a relative (for awhile), school mate, diving buddy and endearing friend. He will be missed.


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