I was born on 6 April 1959 at Presbyterian Hospital in Denver, Colorado, or so I'm told. I attended school in Thornton, Wheat Ridge, Rollinsville, and Nederland, Colorado. I graduated from Wheat Ridge High School in 1977 and enlisted in the U.S. Navy on 27 June 1977. I enlisted in the Navy because I wasn’t sure I wanted to go to school – then I spent my first 21 months in the Navy in school!
I completed Basic Training in San Diego, California, in August 1977; Machinist’s Mate ‘A’ School in Great Lakes, Illinois, in November 1977; Basic Nuclear Power School in Orlando, Florida, in June 1978; Nuclear Power Prototype Training at the Department of Energy’s Idaho National Engineering Laboratory (INEL) , located west of Idaho Falls, Idaho, in December 1978; and Engineering Laboratory Technician School in April 1979. I served on the USS Lafayette (SSBN 616) , the USS L.Y. Spear (AS 36), the USS Alabama (SSBN 731), Navy Recruiting District Denver, Colorado, the USS Key West (SSN 722), and the USS Emory S. Land (AS 39). While on the Key West I made a port visit in Bergen, Norway, where I located original birth, confirmation, and marriage records for my great-great grandparents, Lars Tesdahl and Martha Berg. I retired from the Navy in December 1995 as a Chief Petty Officer (E7).
After retiring from the Navy, I attended Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, completing a Bachelor of Science in Physical Education with an emphasis in Athletic Training and a minor in Chemistry in 1999 and a Master of Science in Physical Education with an emphasis in Exercise Physiology in 2001. I was admitted to doctoral studies in Biomechanics at Oregon State University at Corvallis in 2001, transferred to Texas Woman’s University at Denton in 2002, and completed my course work in 2006. I accepted a position as an Assistant Professor at the University of Great Falls, Montana, in August 2007 where I taught courses in Health and Human Performance. I finished my doctoral dissertation in 2009 and graduated with a Ph.D. in Kinesiology on 15 May 2009. In 2011, I accepted a position at William Penn University in Oskaloosa, Iowa, where I teach courses in Exercise Science. In August 2013 I was appointed as the Chair of the Division of Health and Life Sciences.
I have been doing family history research for over 50 years. I am by no means a professional genealogist, but I do strive for historical accuracy in my research, including, when possible, primary sources. I only rely on secondary sources when primary sources are not available. I rarely rely on tertiary sources. I am a volunteer Family History Consultant for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in Oskaloosa, IA.
I own and operate a wood engraving/turning/carving business named Bubblehead 3D Design.
Gary is 30 degrees from Vlad III of Wallachia, 20 degrees from John Carradine, 20 degrees from Lon Chaney, 25 degrees from Rutger Hauer, 25 degrees from Gloria Holden, 23 degrees from Christopher Lee, 23 degrees from Bela Lugosi, 23 degrees from Leslie Nielsen, 24 degrees from David Niven and 27 degrees from Margaret Allison on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.
Categories: Brigham Young University | Texas Woman's University | Christopher Name Study | USS Lafayette (SSBN-616), United States Navy | USS L. Y. Spear (AS-36), United States Navy | USS Alabama (SSBN-731), United States Navy | USS Key West (SSN-722), United States Navy | USS Emory S. Land (AS-39), United States Navy | Navy Achievement Medal | Navy Expeditionary Medal | National Defense Service Medal | Navy Good Conduct Medal | Navy Arctic Service Ribbon | Sea Service Deployment Ribbon | Navy Recruiting Service Ribbon | US Navy Retired | US Civil War Project Members | World War II Project Members