Dr. Donald W. Imm

Dr. Donald W. Imm

The family of Dr. Donald W. Imm, 61, is saddened to announce his passing on Oct. 1, 2021, at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tenn.

He was born to Eileen “Joyce” Imm (Wilson) and William H. Imm.

Don grew up in Sinclairville, N.Y., where his days were spent exploring and growing a love for the out-doors. After graduating from Cassadaga Valley High School in 1978, he served in the U.S. Navy as a sonar technician. He received a Bachelors of Science in biology from SUNY Fredonia and earned a PhD in ecology from the University of Georgia in 1991.

Don had a long career in conservation and served in multiple leadership positions with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Most recently, he became the deputy assistant regional director for Gulf Restoration after serving as the Georgia State supervisor of ecological services. He loved con-tributing to the advancement of our understanding of the natural world through research and had many successes in the recovery of imperiled species and preservation of rare habitats. He was highly respected by his colleagues for his intelligence, knowledge, and approachability, becoming a mentor to many.

Don was a loving husband, father, and grandfather with a unique sense of humor. He lived with his wife, Gayle, in Athens, Ga., with their two beloved dogs: Madison and Ivy.

Don enjoyed playing Strat-O-Matic, exploring natural areas, feeding the deer that would roam the yard in the afternoons, and using his creativity in the kitchen to prepare delicious meals. Many cherished memories were made with his three grandsons, who he was so excited to have after having three daughters. He loved sharing with them his amazing imagination and passion for science, and was very much still a child at heart.

Don’s positivity and courage in extremely difficult circumstances is an inspiration. His optimism was contagious and his sense of humor made him a true joy to be around. Left to remember his love are Don’s wife, Gayle Martin; his daughters: Sarah (Nick) Messer, Sydney (Frank Miller) Imm and Kelsey Imm; his three adored grandsons: Mason, Jack, and Walker; his father, William (Virginia) Imm; his mother, Joyce Imm; a brother, Ken (Karen) Imm; a stepbrother, Andy (Tam-my) Kincaid; and six nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his twin sister, Debra.

The family will honor Don at a private gathering in New York. A celebration of his life will be held at a later date. Please share memories at www.my keeper.com/profile/Donal-dImm.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to charities listed on the memorial website.