Belvin A. Gillings


Memorial services for Belvin A. Gillings, 87, of Platte, SD will be 10:00 am Friday, July 10, 2020 at St. James Catholic Church in Chamberlain with burial of the ashes in the Riverview Cemetery at Chamberlain. Social distancing is to be practiced at the church.

In lieu of flowers, a memorial will be established.

Belvin Andrew Gillings was born February 13, 1933 on the family farm near Academy, SD the 8th son of Elmer and Belle (Carter) Gillings. After the passing of his mother during childbirth, Belvin was raised by Earl and Mabel Graves for the early part of his life. During his lifetime the entire Graves family became more than just friends they became family that had a special place in Belvin’s heart.

He attended a one room country school near Academy where he harassed the teachers and then Platte High School through the eleventh grade. He enlisted in the United States Air Force on January 9, 1951 serving overseas during the Korean Conflict as a Teletype Operator. After his discharge on January 8, 1955, he attended trade school in Lincoln, NE. He then returned home to the farm to work with Gale Graves.

On December 27, 1958, Belvin was united in marriage to Vivien Hodgin at St. James Catholic Church in Chamberlain. To this union two children were born Timothy and Joyce. For a few years, he worked as a plumber but ultimately his love for farming brought him back to the farm where in the early 1960’s. They purchased their own farm in the early 1970’s. Belvin remained on the farm until the time of his death.

Belvin loved playing cards, dancing, reading, collecting toy tractors, and entertaining pheasant hunters. He especially enjoyed his many adopted dogs. He valued his close friendship with the Platte Colony families.

He served on the LaRoche Township Board, Academy Volunteer Fire Department, and sat as a board member of the Charles Mix FSA. He was a member of St. James Catholic Church in Chamberlain and also a member of the American Legion for 56 years.

Belvin passed away on July 4, 2020 at home in Platte, SD at the age of 87 years. Gratefully sharing his life are his wife Vivien Gillings of Platte, SD; son Timothy Gillings of Chamberlain, SD; daughter Joyce Gillings of Whitewood, SD; two brothers Joseph Gillings of Academy, SD and Alden Gillings of Arvada, CO; step mother Anna Gillings of Platte, SD; a very special family to Belvin, Mike Graves and his family; and many nieces, nephews, and cousins.

Preceding him in death were his parents, infant son, twin infant daughters; and six brothers, John, Lyle, Dean, Robert, Richard, and Francis.

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