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Gary Gordon, 65, passed away suddenly from an acute form of leukemia on May 30, 2012, at St. Mary's Hospital in Duluth.
He was born April 19, 1947 in Los Angeles, Calif.
Gary attended Pacific Palisades High School and completed his undergraduate degree in physical therapy at the University of Southern California. He went on to receive his master's degree at SUNY in Buffalo, NY and earned his PhD in Health Education and Promotion from the University of Oregon.
In addition to working as a physical therapist in California and Israel, Gary was a faculty member at the College of St. Scholastica for 30 years. He helped to start the college's Physical Therapy Department, which he directed for many years, later moving on to teach in the Exercise Physiology Program.
Gary was an active member of Temple Israel Synagogue, where he served as a rabbinical aide. He was well known within the congregation for his work conducting funerals and consoling surviving family members.
One of Gary's other passions was working to create unity between different cultures and faiths. He was a board member on the Duluth Human Rights Commission and an organizer of compassionate listening groups to create dialogue between Muslim and Jewish communities. In 1996 he was presented with an award by Men as Peacemakers for his role in organizing an interfaith delegation to Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories.
After retiring in 2009 Gary and his wife of 35 years, Judy, dedicated their time to promoting healthy lifestyles for area seniors. He became an active member of the Duluth Rowing Club and shared his love for fitness with other retirees. The Gordon's also founded the Age Well Duluth Committee to work with the city to address the needs of our retiring baby boomer generation.
Gary was preceded in death by his mother, Sara Gordon, and his father, Irving Gordon.
He is survived by his wife Judy Gordon; his son Daniel Gordon; his daughter Andrea Gordon; his sister Betty Wood; his nephew Todd Comras; his nieces Zoey, Jade, and Sienna Cohen; his mother-in-law Carol Cohen; his brothers-in-law Lee and Jon Cohen, and his sister-in-law Kim-Anh Tong, as well as all of his extended family at Temple Israel.
MEMORIAL SERVICE: 11 a.m. this Sunday in Temple Israel, 1602 E. 2nd St. The Gary Gordon Active Aging Fund has been set up to establish healthy lifestyle programming for senior citizens in his honor. Checks can be made out and mailed to Temple Israel. Arrangements by Dougherty Funeral Home, (218) 727-3555.