Donald Irl Gent, 83, of
Evansville, Indiana, passed away Saturday, January 23, 2016, in his home, with
his wife and daughter, Naomi Wargel by his side.
Donald, along with his twin sister, Doris, was born in Bolivar, Missouri, December 13, 1932 to Chester and Versa Gent. Donald, at a young age, attended church with his grandpa, John Brown, a Baptist Minister, and as time went on he ask Jesus to come into his heart and was saved.
He was a graduate of Bolivar High School, then
attended two years at Bolivar Baptist College. He then served his country four
years in the U.S. Navy. Donald graduated from University of Missouri in
Springfield, Missouri with a Bachelor Degree in Business Management, Midwestern
Baptist Theological Seminary of Kansas City, Missouri, earning a Masterís
Degree in Theology, and the Missouri University of Kansas City, earning a
Masterís Degree in Public Administration, with an emphasis on Health Care
In addition, he pastored two churches, the New Harmony Baptist Church in Bethany, Missouri and Berlin Baptist Church in Berlin, Missouri. Through the years he served as Interim Pastor in several churches, and supplied the pulpit for pastors of other churches. He also served as a Deacon in Calvary Baptist Church in Evansville, Indiana and was a teacher of an adult class at First Baptist Church in Princeton.
Donald served 35 years as the CEO of three hospitals; Baptist Hospital in Kansas City, Welborn Baptist Hospital of Evansville, where he had the Welborn Clinics in the area built, and Decatur Memorial Hospital in Decatur, Illinois. During his tenure he served as Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Indiana Hospital Association, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the American Protestant Hospital Association, Chairman of the Board of Noram, (a group of hospitals sharing a common interest). Chairman of the Board of Directors of Illinois Workers Compensation Trust, the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Buffalo Trace Council of the Boy Scouts of America, where he was instrumental in starting the popcorn sales of the Boy Scouts, as an elected official of the City of Overland Park, Kansas and as Secretary of the Board of Directors of the Executive Committee of the Southern Baptist Convention.
Donald always loved the little children, taking time to talk to them and often telling a group of them stories. He earned the name of Sucker Man at church, by giving suckers to all of the little ones on Sunday morning before the service started.
Donald was preceded in death by his parents; two sisters, Snoda Smith and Alice Fowler; and a great grandchild, Mari Lamlech.
He is survived by his wife of sixty-three years, Rosemary Gent; three daughters, Naomi (Tim) Wargel, Rebecca (Ken) Brower and Rachel (Jon) Swanson; and two sons, Paul Gent and David Gent; twelve grandchildren, Olivia (Hank) Lamlech, Mari (Travis) Wright, Sarah Brower, Elise (Kyle) Valentine, Zachary Gent, Collin Wargel, Sarah Wargel, Johny Wargel, Emma Wargel, Fletcher Swanson, Axel Swanson, and Victoria Gent; and five great grandchildren, Jharek Wright, Lili Wright, Henry Lamlech, Becca Lamlech and Rex Valentine.
Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m. Wednesday, January 27, 2016 at the Colvin Funeral Home in Princeton, with Pastor Mark Massaro officiating. Burial will follow at the Columbia White Church Cemetery in Princeton.
Visitation will be from 4 until 7 p.m. on Tuesday at the Colvin Funeral Home. Full military rites will be provided by the Retired Military Veterans
We wish to thank the Southern Care Hospice, their chaplin, Genny McGuire for her song and prayers, our aid, Helen and our loyal nurses, Angie Roth and Alexus Cabell for their tender care.