RIDGEFIELD, Conn. -- Donald Louis Gifford, a former Ridgefield and Branford resident who recently spent summers in East Norwalk, died of lung cancer on Jan. 5 in his Naples, Fla., home. He was 77.
He was born on Aug. 24, 1937, in Cohoes, N.Y., and raised in Brooklyn.
After graduating from Brooklyn Prep., he received a degree in accounting from St. John’s University, and then served in the U.S. Navy.
Following his honorable discharge, he was associated with several large accounting firms in New York City. After relocating to Connecticut, he was comptroller of a graphics firm in Stamford for several years.
This move brought his family from their roots in Brooklyn to settle in Ridgefield where he followed his true passion for building beautiful homes.
After almost 30 years in Ridgefield and serving the town in many ways such as on the Planning and Zoning Board and Republican Town Committee he moved with his wife to Branford, Conn., in 2002 to be closer to the water.
In 2012, they moved to East Norwalk allowing them to be live with their family as well as so close to their extended family at Sprite Island Yacht Club.
He is survived by his wife of 53 years Catharine and his three children Robert (Rita) of Westport, Elizabeth Wyman (Jeffrey) of Naples, Fla., and Scituate, Mass., and Matthew (Joy) of East Norwalk.
He is also survived by his grandchildren Sophie, Emily Wyman, Michael, Peter Gifford and Jack Cooper Gifford.
On Saturday Jan. 31 at 1:15 p.m., there will be a memorial Mass celebrated at St. Mary’s Church in Ridgefield, followed by a gathering at St. Mary’s.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to Whittingham Cancer Center at Norwalk Hospital, 34 Maple St., Norwalk, CT 06856.
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