On April 29, reitred USAID employee David S. Gardella, who lived in La Guácima, Alajuela, Costa Rica, succumbed in his 8.5-year fight against metastatic renal carcinoma.
In 1976, David trained in La Guácima for Peace Corps service in Honduras, and later also served as a Volunteer in Costa Rica. Afterward, he entered a Masters program at CATIE in Turrialba.
In 1980, David entered USAID’s IDI program, returning to Costa Rica for his first assignment as an Agricultural Development Officer. He subsequently worked in agricultural development in the Dominican Republic, Panama, and Bolivia.
He retired from the Agency in 2000, returning to La Guácima to build his retirement home. In retirement he contributed to USAID rural development in Colombia and Haiti through provision of vanilla tissue culture plantlets. David became committed to tree planting to combat deforestation and forest degradation, planting trees on his farm near Puerto Viejo de Sarapiquí and organizing tree planting events with local school children to raise their awareness of the environmental services provided by trees and forests.
David is survived by his wife Cecilia Arias, son David Jr., daughter Sarah, and three grandchildren.