A longtime resident of Whitby, passed peacefully with her husband and daughters by her side at Lakeridge Health Oshawa on November 1, 2020 at the age of 70.
She was born on August 12, 1950 in Kulmbach, Germany, daughter of the late Horst and Gertrude Schacht.
Gabrielle immigrated to Canada at the age of 4 and it became her home.
She grew up in the Beaches in Toronto and had a loving upbringing that blended German and Canadian cultures.
Gabrielle was married to the love of her life, David, for 51 happy years.
She was wonderfully devoted to her three daughters Jennifer Knowles (Tim), Melissa DeCicco (Anthony), and Rebecca Lee Birtwistle (John), and was the very best Omi to Abigail, Olivia, Annaliese, John, and Charlie. Her grandchildren were her greatest source of joy and she lived to make each visit special for them.
Gabrielle was an incredible woman who absolutely loved life. She was always trying new things – new recipes, new design ideas, going to college, and starting a new career with her husband. She took up golf later in life and loved to play in her women’s league. She cherished evenings at the theatre, Buffalo shopping trips and playing the piano.
Her most heartfelt memories are travelling with her family. The most memorable trips were a Disney cruise with her grandchildren, family beach vacations in Mexico and St. Lucia, dining at Trattoria Luzzi in Rome, and a trip to Germany with her daughters and David to visit family, drive the Romantic Road, and indulge in great German food and beer.
Gabrielle treasured her many close friendships and loved nothing more than a good chat over a glass of wine. She was known for her storytelling, her hostess skills, the ability to make anyone feel welcome and lighting up a room everywhere she went.
She adored the family cottage on Gull Lake. She loved pontoon rides, creating delicious meals, swims across the lake, and appetizer hour with martinis on the deck. Most dear to her was hosting the annual Omi and Grandpa camp where she made memories of a lifetime with her grandchildren.
Private family services are being held at BARNES MEMORIAL FUNERAL HOME, Whitby.
Online messages of condolence may be shared with the family by visiting barnesmemorialfuneralhome.com .
Gabrielle’s true gift was her ability to help others and the family takes great comfort that she will live on though her Trillium Gift of Life donations.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to the Hospital for Sick Children, SickKids Foundation.