Gilad Desheh was born on July 10, 1952 in the Gallil. His parents were at the time members of Kibbutz Yiftah but the family soon moved to Kibbutz Maagan Michael. When his parents were divorced in 1953, Gilad went with his American-born mother to the US where he attended a school for gifted children. Returning to Israel at age thirteen he quickly adjusted to being back, lost all traces of his American accent, and became a leader both academically and socially within his group at the Gymnasia Rehavia in Jerusalem. A talented musician who played both the piano and guitar, Gilad was also active in the tsofim (Scouts) and volunteered for Magen David Adom.
Gilad entered the IDF in November 1970 and served in the tank corps. As an officer, he was well liked and respected both by those who served under him and by his superiors. During the Yom Kippur War he was serving with his unit on the Southern Front. He fell during fierce fighting on the outskirts of Kunetra on October 6, 1973. He is buried in the military cemetery on Mt. Herzl.