On March 17, 2011, Dr. Arnold Giesbret, 85, passed away peacefully at home. He was born June 11, 1925 in Dermanke [Kiev], Russia. The Russian revolution eventually drove his parents, Elfrieda and Karl Giesbrecht, to bribe their way out of Russia with he and his brother Richard. They immigrated to Winnipeg, Canada in late 1929 [a sister and brother died earlier].
In his early years, Arnold worked on relative’s farms, in his father’s foundry and excelled at scholastics. He attended Luxton Public School and St. Johns High School. He graduated from the University of Manitoba with a B.Sc. degree in 1948 and became a Meteorologist in the Royal Canadian Air Force. At the Trenton, Nova Scotia RCAF base, he met his future wife, Bettie May Flaxman.
After his brother became a doctor, Arnold decided to pursue medicine as well. Returning to Winnipeg, he first helped in his father’s foundry to make this possible, then went on to the University of Manitoba medical school, graduating near the top of his class in 1957.
He practiced briefly in Hallock, Minnesota, then in 1959, moved Bettie and an expanding family of four children, Richard, Elizabeth, Mary and Patricia, to Glendale, California.
After securing a job with Ross-Loos Medical Group in Glendale, he immediately bought a modern, glass-walled home sporting a patio, pool and palm trees. The family then expanded to include two more children, Charles and Nancy.
Shortly thereafter, Arnold started his medical practice in nearby La Crescenta, later moving a few miles to his own building in La Canada. Having a strong work ethic, he dedicated himself to medicine, serving the Glendale-Crescenta Valley community for many years.
After the frigid winters of Canada, he embraced the benign weather and beauty of California, also enjoying the burgeoning classical music scene, sailing, golf and skiing. His simple pleasures included a drive down the coast or sailing to Catalina Island.
Arnold was also a voracious reader and an avid learner. In his later years, he became especially interested in world events and politics, collecting books and papers on the subject.
His wife of 51 years, Bettie May Giesbret, passed away Dec. 26, 2006. Surviving family includes his brother Richard Giesbrecht, his six children: Richard Giesbret, Elizabeth Richard, Mary Jane Giesbret, Patricia Johnson, Charles Giesbret and Nancy Taylor.
His eight grandchildren include Justin Richard, Sean Richard, Elise Johnson, Kyle Johnson, Garrett Giesbret, Kanani White and Kelly Taylor and Annie Taylor.
Services for Dr. Arnold Giesbret will be held at Wee Kirk O’the Heather, Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Glendale; reception to follow.
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