Keith Gilbertson Sr. Timeline

  • 1927: Born Aug. 20 in Snohomish, second son of Steven and Helen Gilbertson.
  • 1942: Earned first high school letter in spring as ninth-grade tennis player.
  • 1945: Graduated Snohomish High School as four-sport letterman, football captain and two-time Most Inspirational player and entered the U.S. Naval Reserve, serving one year on active duty in the Pacific.
  • 1946: Returned home from the Navy and married high school sweetheart Eileen Amundson on Aug. 31 at Swans Trail Lutheran Church in Snohomish before both left for college at Washington State in Pullman.
  • 1947: Suffered head injury during spring football, ending his playing career but launching new career as student assistant coach.
  • 1948: Son Keith Jr. born.
  • 1950: Earned education and physical education degrees at WSC in spring while also serving as Pullman High track coach, and returned to Snohomish in fall to begin teaching/coaching career as an assistant football coach under Stan Bates and assistant track coach under Everett Woodward.
  • 1952: Son Jim born.  Coached freshman basketball team for first of two seasons.
  • 1953-55: Named head football coach at Snohomish, succeeding Bates. Also became an assistant basketball coach under Woodward for two seasons and succeeded Woodward as head track coach in 1955. Son Jay born in 1955.
  • 1956-65: Lost his football job and stepped away from basketball coaching but expanded track coaching to year-round role, running summer AAU track program and coaching cross county in the fall. Named Snohomish Junior Chamber of Commerce Man of the Year in  ’61. Snohomish County Man of the Year finalist in ’61 and ’62. Named Everett Herald Coach of the Year in 1963.
  • 1964: Joined Dick Armstrong’s SHS football staff as an assistant coach while remaining head cross country coach for two more seasons.
  • 1966: Received Washington Track and Field Award for outstanding contributions after retiring as SHS track/cross country coach. Joined Jack de Kubber’s SHS basketball staff as junior varsity coach and varsity assistant coach through 1978.
  • 1973-75: Joined Perry Stangvik’s SHS baseball staff as assistant coach.
  • 1978: Named Snohomish County Man of the Year. Joined Jim Adams’ SHS boys basketball staff after de Kubber’s retirement.
  • 1981: Retired from teaching but continued as an unpaid volunteer assistant coach in football and basketball. Suffered mild stroke during basketball season but returned after just five weeks to help coach team in postseason.
  • 1985: Inducted into the Washington State Coaches Association Football Hall of Fame.
  • 1994: Named charter member of the Snohomish High School Hall Fame. Also among the first inducted into the Washington State Coaches Association Cross County Hall of Fame. First recipient of the Ronald R. Kelley Memorial Award from the WSU School of Education for excellence in education and dedication to student athletics.
  • 1995: Joined Mark Perry’s football staff after Armstrong’s retirement; left boys basketball staff with Adams’ departure and joined Mark Albertine’s girls basketball staff.
  • 2000: Joined Ken Roberts’ girls basketball staff following Albertine’s retirement from coaching.
  • 2006: Among the first honorees on the John R. Wooden Coaches Wall of Honor.
  • 2010: Coached his final season of football and girls basketball before undergoing heart surgery.
  • 2011: Died Feb. 16 following complications in recovery from surgery. In June, posthumously named for induction into the Snohomish County Sports Hall of Fame.  In September, SHS sports and fitness center named in his honor.

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