The Foreign Service Journal - January/February 2014 - page 86

Alma Simpson Gibson,
99, wife
of the late Wallace (Wally) Gibson, a
Foreign Service officer with the U.S.
Information Agency, died peacefully on
Nov. 16 at her home in Alexandria, Va.
Mrs. Gibson was born on Oct. 31,
1914, and grew up in Falls River, Mass.
During World War II, she served as a
registered nurse in the Armed Forces,
achieving the rank of first lieutenant.
She was one of the oldest surviving army
nurses at the time of her death.
As a Foreign Service spouse, she
accompanied Mr. Gibson on assign-
ments in Jakarta, Hong Kong and Taipei.
She is survived by two sons, Scott, of
London, England, and Steven, of Spring-
field, Va.
Robert V. “Bob” Gildea
, 91, a
retired Foreign Service officer, died on
Nov. 25 at his home in Arlington, Va., fol-
lowing a prolonged battle with Parkin-
son’s disease and related complications.
His wife and friends were at his side.
Born on April 28, 1922, in Coaldale,
Pa., Mr. Gildea was the son of former
congressman and newspaper publisher,
James H. Gildea. During World War II,
he flew combat missions with the U. S.
Army Air Corps’ 100th Bomb Group,
based in England, and later served with
U.S. forces in Europe. He graduated
from Pennsylvania State University in
1948 and worked for several years as
a reporter for local newspapers in the
Mr. Gildea joined the U.S. Informa-
tion Agency in 1954. Following an initial
assignment in Saigon, he had tours of
duty in Dusseldorf and Frankfurt before
returning to Washington in 1962 as a
writer at the Voice of America. After Thai
language training, he was assigned to
Bangkok as director of the American
Information Center in 1966. In 1969 he
Kathryn O. Clark-Bourne,
88, a
retired Foreign Service officer, died on
Aug. 8 in Eugene, Ore.
Ms. Clark-Bourne was born in Fort
Collins, Colo. After attending Colorado
State University, she moved to Seattle
during World War II and worked at the
Boeing Corporation as a draftsman on
B-29 bombers and other planes. She grad-
uated with a degree in journalism from
the University of Washington in 1947.
From 1947 to 1949, she served as a mil-
itary intelligence analyst in the U.S. occu-
pation administration in Tokyo. She then
returned to the United States and earned
a master’s degree in mass communica-
tions from the University of Minnesota.
In 1952, Ms. Clark-Bourne joined the
State Department, serving in the Bureau
of Intelligence and Research until switch-
ing to the Foreign Service in 1956. She
served overseas in Tehran, Rotterdam and
In 1966, she married Kenneth Bourne
and, because at that time married women
were not allowed to serve, she was forced
to leave the Foreign Service. The marriage
later ended in divorce.
Ms. Clark-Bourne worked in the
private sector in New York from 1967 to
1975, when she returned to the Foreign
Service. Her Washington assignments
included the Indo-Chinese Task Force,
fisheries affairs and West African affairs
in the department. Overseas, she served
as political counselor in Lagos, as deputy
chief of mission in Conakry and as consul
general in Douala, Cameroon. She retired
in 1989 after a tour in the Inspection
In retirement, Ms. Clark-Bourne
served on the Board of Directors of
DACOR and volunteered as an editor at
the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C.
She is survived by her brother, Andrew
Clark, of Cottage Grove, Ore.
returned to Vietnam as chief information
officer in the Joint United States Public
Affairs Office.
He was assigned to Vientiane in 1971
as chief information officer, and later
deputy public affairs officer. Shortly
before the Royal Lao government fell to
communist forces in 1975, he was trans-
ferred to Bonn to manage the extensive
network of American cultural and infor-
mation centers in the Federal Republic of
Returning to Washington in 1983, Mr.
Gildea worked with German diplomats
to commemorate 300 years of German
immigration to the United States. The
resulting German-American Tricen-
tennial celebration was authorized
by Congress and signed into law by
President Ronald Reagan, and legislation
followed to establish a national German-
American Day. The Federal Republic of
Germany awarded Mr. Gildea a distin-
guished service medal on April 22, 1985.
He retired later that year.
In retirement, Mr. Gildea maintained
contact with friends and relatives, trav-
eled widely and followed local politics
closely. He was a loyal supporter of his
alma mater, Pennsylvania State Uni-
versity, an active member of the 100th
Bomb Group’s alumni organization and
the American Legion, and a participant
in the Public Diplomacy Alumni Associa-
His many close friends among former
colleagues remember Mr. Gildea for his
enjoyment of life, no matter how difficult
the circumstances. They recall how his
good humor and spirit of fun enriched
their lives.
Mr. Gildea is survived by his wife, Kim
Gildea of Arlington, Va., a daughter from
an earlier marriage, two stepchildren,
five grandchildren, an older brother and
sister, a younger brother, and numerous
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