He was born on January 24, 1942, in Coos Bay, Oregon. He was a United States Army Veteran. He was married to Cecile Ingram Atkins in 1991 in Ocala, Florida. He retired from 42 years in the lumber industry in 2006 and he and Cecile moved to Clayton.
He is survived by his beloved wife and best friend, Cecile; a son Brandon Gagliano and his wife Sonia of Roseburg, Oregon; 3 daughters: Lisa Buster and husband Mike of Roseburg, April Cullett and her husband Fred of Baltimore, Maryland, and Karen Eilskov and husband Todd of Marietta; a stepson, Carl Atkins of Ft. Worth, Texas; two stepdaughters, Juliette Wood and husband, John of Knoxville, Tennessee, and Ashley Skalko and husband Ryan of Clearwater, Florida; a sister LaRena Dockter of Coos Bay; and a brother, Leonard Gagliano of Ft. Morgan, Colorado. He also leaves behind 13 grandchildren and one great-grandchild.
Mel and Cecile were the former owners of The Gallery on Savannah in Clayton, where they made and sold their hand-crafted jewelry. Besides being a talented jeweler he was also a “gourmet cook” and an avid photographer. He enjoyed playing golf, fishing, traveling, gardening, making furniture and watching the Florida State Seminoles and the Oregon Ducks play football. He was a serious Bible scholar and spent many hours every day studying the word. He was an active member of Clayton Baptist Church, where he served as a deacon and Sunday school teacher. He went on three mission trips to Romania, where he helped refurbish a pediatric cancer hospital and build small churches. He donated his body to Emory University School of Medicine.
A memorial Service will be held on Saturday, June 28, at Clayton Baptist Church, 120 S. Church Street at 11 a.m. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made in his honor to Harvest International, P.O. Box 6690, Ocala, Florida 34478, Sid Weber Memorial Cancer Fund, P.O. Box 485 Rabun Gap, Georgia 30568 or to Clayton Baptist Church. Please put “Mel Gagliano” on the memo line of the check.
Hunter Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements. An online obituary and guest register is available at www.hunterfuneralhomega.com.