|Birth: ||Feb. 16, 1928|
|Death: ||May 24, 2010|
Rosemary "Rosie" (Morin) Gabriel, 82, of Great Falls, a homemaker, died of natural causes May 24 at her home.
Her memorial service is 3 p.m. Saturday at Hillcrest Lawn Memorial Chapel, followed by a reception at Meadow Lark Country Club. Schnider Funeral Home is handling arrangements.
Rosie was born Feb. 16, 1928, in Malta, Mont., daughter of Helen (Primeau) Morin and Lee S. Morin. She was the oldest of five siblings. Rosie lived in the Missoula area until graduating from Missoula's Sacred Heart High School in 1945. She then moved to Great Falls, where she worked as a telephone operator and met her husband, John Paul ("J.P.") Gabriel.
Rosie and J.P. were married in a small private ceremony in Fort Benton on Christmas Day 1946. They were married for 47 years, until her beloved J.P. passed away on June 2, 1993. Rosie continued to reside in the family home in Great Falls until her passing.
In 1953, Rosie, J.P. and family moved to El Campo, Texas, where they purchased a home and built a new Dairy Queen. Together they worked in the store 12 hours a day, six days a week, until they moved back to Montana in 1960, to take over the Gabriel family farm near Big Sandy. For the next 33 years, Rosie spent her summers at the farm, caring for the kids and feeding the family and crew hearty meals, which she would deliver to the wheat fields in her green Cadillac.
Rosie had a phenomenal sense of humor, with a raucous laugh that could easily be identified at some distance. Her flair and effervescent personality were evident in everything she wore, lived in or drove, from her red Cadillac (the Rosie G) to her sparkling outfits and glittering shoes. Rosie was born to entertain and loved to invite dozens of couples over to the family home for evenings of drinks, food and laughter. A gourmet cook, no one ever left Rosie's home feeling hungry or thirsty. Even after a stroke limited her ability to speak, she still made instant connections with people using short phrases, hand gestures and her amazingly expressive face.
Rosie was the female Art Linkletter to the neighborhood kids, with an ability to showcase the budding personalities of her young friends - and it didn't hurt that she always kept a stash of sweet treats. She was considered a second mother by many of her children's friends as she warmly accepted them, gave gentle advice if needed, but most of all provided a friendly place to just hang out.
Rosie is survived by her loving family: her four children, Dennis (Mary Jo) Gabriel of Eugene, Ore., Suellen Gabriel (Frank) Atkinson of Bellevue, Wash., John Paul (Renee) Gabriel Jr. of Boze-man, and Douglas (Debbie) Gabriel of Great Falls; her three sisters, Betty Halfhide of Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, Shirley (Joseph) Schreiber of Spring Branch, Texas, and Caryle (Ray) Bryant of Missoula, Mont.; her three grandchildren, Mandy Fisher and Brianne Gabriel of Oregon, and Bryton Gabriel of Montana; and three stepgrandchildren, Tim and Christina Atkinson of Wash., and Jamie Sussdorf of California; and her two great-grandchildren, Ella and McHenry Fisher of Oregon.
In addition to her husband, she was preceded in death by her mother, Helen Johnson; father Lee Morin; and brother Lee Morin Jr.
Rosie, a lifelong member of Beta Sigma Phi sorority, as well as an active member of the American Legion and Elks Auxiliary, was especially interested in projects for disadvantaged and special-needs children. The family asks that any donations on her behalf be sent to Peace Hospice of Montana, 1101 26th St S., Great Falls, MT 59405.
Great Falls Tibune, 6-2-2010
John Paul Gabriel (1923 - 1993)
Created by: Sherry Hess
Record added: Mar 26, 2011
Find A Grave Memorial# 67465501