Dr. Gibson, 90, was a former dean of the College of Pharmacy from 1961 to 1972 and a professor at the College of Dentistry.
When he received the UNMC College of Pharmacy Alumni Association's honorary alumnus award in 2010, Dr. Gibson was lauded for his "exemplary and distinguished professional career."
Ted Roche, Ph.D., remembered Dr. Gibson as being committed to education and his students.
"He was a very gracious person," Dr. Roche said. "I will always think of Des as a mentor and good friend."
Dr. Roche also pointed to the work of Dr. Gibson as being integral to the growth and success of the College of Pharmacy.
Dr. Gibson was not content to see pharmacists as people who simply dispensed medicine, Dr. Roche said. "He talked about what students needed to know to get pharmacy more involved in health care, from a personal, patient-oriented standpoint."
Ron Hospodka was an undergraduate student, graduate student and instructor at the College of Pharmacy while Dr. Gibson was the dean. Now a professor at Creighton University, he remembers Dr. Gibson as a good listener with a good sense of humor, a steady leader the students both liked and respected.
"He was very proud of the profession of pharmacy," Hospodka said. "He took pride in how well his students did while at the university and after they had graduated."
Dr. Gibson's family will greet friends from 5 to 7 p.m. today at Roper and Sons, 4300 O St., Lincoln. Memorial contributions can be made to Antelope Park Church of the Brethren, Peoples' City Mission, UNMC College of Pharmacy Foundation. Condolences can be left online.