On Saturday, June 1, 2019, Alfred Carlton Gilbert III, who we all knew as Fred, or if you saw his car in town, ACG3, left us peacefully and quietly, with his wife, Joan, by his side after losing a long battle with cancer.
Fred was born June 28, 1946, in Hamden, CT, to Alfred C. Gilbert Jr. and Jean Tibbetts Gilbert. He was the second of four children and the oldest son. Always proud of his ACG3 name, he honored his family history. His grandfather, AC, invented the Erector set, and Fred remained a member of the AC Gilbert Heritage Society until his death.
Fred enjoyed a typically outdoors childhood in Hamden, which formed the basis of his love of the outdoors. He attended Williston Academy and Norwich University and served two years in the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War.
A champion swimmer from a young age, he went on to be a powerful force at Norwich,
breaking and holding many records there for decades. His butterfly was a beautiful thing to
After his discharge from the army, Fred settled in the Mad River Valley and made his life
and home here for 47 years. A carpenter by vocation, he built both of his Valley homes along with countless places in The Valley, creating his beloved Sugar Pail Hill home, nurturing bountiful gardens, cutting timber for heat, having the companionship of several dogs and critters and living the life of a mountain man. His door was always open to friends and family and epic parties just grew around him. Home was his joy and the great outdoors was his passion.
Fred and Joan married in 1999 and continued his tradition of friends, family critters,
bounty and love. They later determined they were better friends than spouses but remained
married and close friends.
One of Fred’s greatest gifts was his sense of civic duty and giving. He hiked and
maintained the Long Trail and was a lifelong volunteer, serving on the Green Mountain Club’s board for several years. He was instrumental in creating the Mad River Path, built bridges, maintained trails and was on their board. Later he gave his talents to planning commissions and conservation commissions in both Fayston and Waitsfield.
Fred is survived by his wife, Joan Bartlett Gilbert; his sister, Julie Gilbert Trail and Shan
Trail; brother, John Gilbert and Ali Gilbert; brother, David Gilbert and Kathy Gilbert; several
cherished Gilbert and Tibbetts cousins, nieces and nephews; and Bartlett in-laws.
His father, Alfred C. Gilbert Jr., and mother, Jean Tibbetts Gilbert, passed away before
him, as well as many close friends that he also considered family.
A memorial service will be held and announced for Fred here in the Mad River Valley at
a later date this summer.
Contributions to Fred’s memory may be made to the Green Mountain Club, 4711
Waterbury Stowe Road, Waterbury Center, VT 05677, or the Mad River Path Association, 4601 Main Street, Waitsfield, VT 05673.