Gideon was born on March 30, 1925 in Vienna, Austria. At age of 13, the Nazis took over Austria and placed him in a school for Jewish children. His father was taken prisoner and upon his release, the family left Austria to finally arrive as Jewish refugees in the US, April 1941 via France, Spain, Portugal and Cuba.
He was drafted at 18 years old in June, 1943 and attended boot camp at Fort Bragg, NC but due to his linguistic background, he was sent to Camp Ritchie, MD for training in French intelligence and became a part of the Ritchie Boys.
He landed on Utah Beach one month after D-Day, and was assigned as a truck driver to the 3804th QMC Truck Co., 4th Armored Div. bringing gasoline to the tanks. As his unit advanced through Normandy, his commanding officer took a wrong turn into German lines. Gideon was able to use his French to get the men back to the rest of the unit safely. The 3804th continued on throughout France. As they moved through Luxembourg and Belgium, they witnessed the shell shock of the soldiers coming back from the Battle of the Bulge. As their trucks returned from delivering supplies, they were highly susceptible to ambush. His unit crossed the Rhine River into Germany and helped to liberate Ohrdruf concentration camp.
Gideon separated from the Army on December 16, 1945 with an honorable discharge and participated in five battle campaigns.