Sudden death of Waas Bakery owner

The owner of Waas Bakery Bruce Gilardi has died suddenly, aged 55.

Mr Gilardi moved to Shetland in April 2016 and had roots to the isles dating back to the 1890s.

Waas Bakery owner Bruce Gilardi has died, aged 55.

It is understood Mr Gilardi died on Sunday afternoon in Edinburgh following a suspected heart attack. Police were called to a sudden death at Edinburgh Airport.

Mr Gilardi took over the the West Side business from Charlie Hodge in August 2016.

Since then he rebranded the firm, introducing a popular range of products including puckle and soda breads being sold in local shops and supermarkets across the isles.

Born in California, Mr Gilardi was a former US Navy officer and is the grandson of John Arthur and Gertrude Jamieson.

He set up his own investment management company in New York and created the idea for a high-end chocolate company and cafe in the Big Apple for which he raised funds.

Mr Gilardi’s mother Jacqueline taught in Shetland for several years before working her way around the world.
She met her husband in Vancouver and raised five children in Southern California.

After visiting his aunt in Walls in 2015 Mr Gilardi heard the bakery was for sale.

And after learning more about the business he returned to work at the bakery and later made an offer.

Mr Gilardi first visited Shetland as a teenager in 1979, followed by a hamefarin in 2010.


Add Your Comment
  • Stella Smith

    • February 6th, 2018 18:22

    This is very sad, still a young man, who has left his mark on Shetland with his amazing bread,my deepest sympathy to his family & staff.

  • Wai Leong & Jerry Chan

    • February 8th, 2018 16:48

    Bruce was such a wonderful and warm person. Always has a warm smile for everyone. We will miss him!
    Rest In Peace Bruce.
    Friends from Singapore.

  • Belinda Whyte

    • February 8th, 2018 20:12

    I’m very saddened and shocked to hear of Bruce’s death. My mother, Cushla Bretton, enjoyed his company and he was very supportive of us during her illness. This weekend I shall raise a glass of Aperol spritz in his honour as he introduced me to the drink in Christmas 2016. Love and thoughts to his family and those he left a mark on.

  • James Petersen

    • August 24th, 2018 17:19

    I knew Bruce at Cornell University and am very saddened to hear about this. I know that he was living his dream in the Shetlands.

  • Lynne Marxhetti

    • March 11th, 2019 13:20

    Bruce was a very good friend to me and my family. We will always remember him with much love.

  • Emilio Ring Ranieri

    • April 12th, 2019 22:03

    I learn it right now‼ ️‼ ️
    Bruce ………. We met in the 90s in Zurich, through Hannes BUHLER, my dear friend, who also passed away in 2016‼ ️‼ ️‼‼ ️
    I am very sorry ️‼ ️
    I’ll take you in ❤️

  • Bettina Hempel

    • September 20th, 2019 19:44

    We lost a fine Renaissance man in Bruce: multi-talented, multi-lingual, everything he touched became gold, so to speak. Compassionate, passionate about life, an elegant soul, he left an indelible impression on me, and many others who crossed paths with him. I met Bruce on a plane to Switzerland in ’92. So handsome, smart and inspirational. You left this Earth much too soon, but what comforts me is that you were in such a idyllic place in your life. Love, Bettina

  • Bruno Florenzano

    • October 15th, 2019 1:05

    Great person . He was truly a nice person! I met him at Harvard and he helped me get hired at Goldman Sachs. Truly genuine person. I owe a lot to him . I was shocked to hear the news and I truly will remember him as a fantastic person!

  • Otho Kerr

    • December 27th, 2022 15:04

    It’s December 27, 2022. I was thinking about Bruce this morning. I hadn’t connected with him in awhile, which I attributed to his being in Scotland and the time that passed as a result of the pandemic. I hopped on Facebook for an update, and I noticed that his page was gone. So I googled him and was shocked to discover that he had passed. My heart is broken. He was an extraordinary man, with talents that ran the spectrum and looks that could stop cars. My belated condolences to his family.


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