Walter Douglas Gubler

Jan. 28, 1946 – July 19, 2018

Walter “Doug” Douglas Gubler, 72, passed away July 19, 2018. He was born Jan. 28, 1946, in St. George, Utah, to June Gubler and Thelma Whipple Gubler of Santa Clara, Utah. He was raised in Santa Clara and graduated from Dixie High School in 1964.

Doug earned a Bachelor of Science degree in botany from Southern Utah University, a Master of Science in plant pathology from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville and a doctorate in plant pathology from the University of California, Davis.

Doug worked one year as a research scientist with Campbell Soup Company, and then moved to U.C. Davis as an extension plant pathologist. Called an “academic legend” by his colleagues, he was a co-author on over 120 refereed journal publications, 165 book chapters, one authored book, six books edited and 168 abstracts. His research in powdery mildew and Botrytis bunch rot were game-changers for the grape industry. He also completed valuable research for the tree fruit, strawberry and melon industries. He gave over 40 talks a year and consulted in over 63 countries. He was recognized globally as a leading expert in his field and received accolades from many groups, organizations and associations for his contributions. Doug mentored many graduate students, post-docs and researchers during his career, and his legacy will live on through their continued efforts.

Doug married his high school sweetheart, Carol Leavitt Gubler, in August 1964, and they had five children. While Doug loved his career, nothing came close to how much he loved and cherished his family. He was proud of each of their achievements, and he was quick to let them know. He generously shared his love and his sense of humor with his family, which made for many happy family gatherings.

Doug enjoyed teaching and learning, golfing, listening to talk radio, researching, telling jokes, playing cards and games with his grandchildren, and spending quality time with his friends and family.

Doug was an active member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and served in various callings, including bishop. He loved the Lord and the blessings of serving in the church, and he regularly blessed the lives of others through his generosity and service. He was a humble and kind religious leader and beloved by all those he served and worked with in that capacity. Once, when asked about the sacrifice of serving, he said, “Despite the demands, it is such an honor to serve in a capacity where I can hopefully be an instrument for good, in helping to serve God and my fellow men.”

He is survived by his wife, Carol; son, Curtis; daughters, Kirsten Stevens (Lance); Sherie Linford (Fred); Andrea Carter (Brent); Natalie Jeffs (Randy); and grandchildren, J.D., Kaylee, Morgan, Chelsea, Ryan, Blake, Brandon, Lauren, Garrett, Ashley, Tyler, Julia, Andrew, Whitney, Spencer, Dax, Lexi, Brynn and Grant. His surviving siblings include Ward Gubler (Judy), Pat Clove (Sheldon), Duane Gubler (Bobbie), Muriel Blake, Murry Gubler (Jane) and Jeff Gubler (Angela). He was preceded in death by his parents June and Thelma Gubler and his sister Doris Daugherty.

Funeral services

  • Funeral services will be held Monday, July 30, at 11 a.m. at the Santa Clara LDS 14th Ward chapel, 630 Riesling Ave., Santa Clara, Utah.
  • Visitations will be held Sunday from 6-8 p.m. at Metcalf Mortuary, 288 West St. George Blvd. and on Monday, prior to services, from 9:30-10:30 a.m. at the church.
  • Interment will be in the Santa Clara City Cemetery.
  • Memorial service will also be held in Davis, California, on Friday, Aug. 17, at 2 p.m. at the LDS chapel on 615 Elmwood Drive, Davis, California.

Arrangements have been entrusted to the care of Metcalf Mortuary, 435-673-4221.

For condolences, full obituary and funeral listings please visit Metcalf Mortuary online.

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