Flying Tiger Line
Pilots Association

Derrel “Gibby” Gibbins

In Memoriam...

September 5, 1927- October 16, 2017

Derrel Thomas Gibbins (Gibby), 90, of Fremont California passed away on October 16th surrounded by family. Gibby was born September 5th, 1927 in Kansas City, MO to Thomas Henry Gibbins and Harriet Mae (Thomas) Gibbins.

Gibby enlisted in the Navy on his 17th birthday, serving on the USS S.D. Sturgis, and personally witnessing the surrender of Japan aboard USS Missouri ending World War II.  After the war, Gibby, who had a lifelong love of flying, started his career as a flight mechanic.  After “taking a walk” with Jimmy Hoffa, he went on to become a pilot for Transocean Airline from 1947 to 1955.  He was subsequently hired by Flying Tigers as a Flight Engineer in 1956, upgraded in 1967 to the front seat, and retired as a Captain in 1986.

Gibby had an amazing career transporting everything from thoroughbred Arabian racehorses, to monkeys from Asia in order to help develop the Salk polio vaccine. Among his proudest accomplishments is logging 10,000 hours transporting troops and supplies to Vietnam. Gibby was absolutely fearless when it came to flying and it was his greatest joy.

He was also an avid fisherman, hunter, volunteer at the Museum of Local History in Fremont, and an Oakland A’s fan. He will live on through his endless stories and unforgettable sense of humor. Gibby is survived by his wife, Ingeborg (Inky); son, Mike; three daughters, Deborah, Chari, and Tracy (Darren); granddaughter, Shannon (Eric); great grandson, Jameson; and his beloved cat, Gizmo. Services were held at 1pm on Monday, October 23rd, 2017 at the Chapel of the Chimes in Hayward CA.

Shannon Feldman (Gibby's Granddaughter)
2155 S. Bascom Ave, Suite 212
Campbell, CA 95008
(408) 637-7450

Anyone wishing to contribute to this page with archived pictures or testimonials about Gibby is encouraged to contact both Shannon (above) and us at

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