Gabe Slaymaker, 37, went peacefully to heaven on March 18, 2019.
He is survived by his parents, Rachel (Doyle) Pettit; son, Patrick Slaymaker; siblings, Veria Votroubek, Travis (Pam) Pettit, Chris (Shannon) Andrews, Robin (Dave) McAllister, Jerico (Jen) Andrews, Nina (Tyler) Brott and Richard; aunt, Rose (Tim) Slaymaker; biological father, Delane (Joanie) Moomey; along with many nieces, nephews and friends; and his beloved cat, Oreo.
He was preceded in death by his brother, Nathan Miller; and grandparents.
Services: 11 a.m. March 30, with visitation at 10 a.m., at First Church of the Nazarene, 3113 First Ave. SW, Cedar Rapids, by Pastor Tim Carter.
Gabe was a talented, compassionate and handsome man with a great smile. He loved spending time with his family and friends. Along with his mother, Gabe's first loves were his dad (Doyle) and going fishing and camping. Then at 17, he met Erica and, five years later, their son, Patrick, was born. Although Gabe and Erica split up, Gabe respected Erica meeting and marrying Joe Pecinovsky, Patrick's stepdad. Patrick was the central focus of Gabe's free time, along with his cat, Oreo. Gabe was elated when he was reunited with his half-siblings in the past few years. He was looking forward to enjoying activities with "his sibs." Gabe will be remembered for his devotion to his son, loving hugs, enjoying beef jerky with Grandpa Bill and his quick wit and sense of humor. As a teenager he also wrote poetry.
Gabe worked 15 years at T&M Services as a project manager and installer of office furniture and refabrication. He was a hard worker and took great pride in performing his assignments and mentoring new co-workers, coaching them to perform work accurately and safely. He made many valuable friendships through his assignments. Gabe excelled at his work and was a valuable employee.
He enjoyed his hobby of having both freshwater and saltwater aquariums. His Aunt Rose introduced Gabe to the ocean in Florida. This influenced his decisions to vacation with Aric and other friends in coastal areas in and around Mexico. They enjoyed snorkeling, hiking ziplining and sightseeing. Gabe loved to grill food and prepare tasty dishes. He was nicknamed "The Grill Master."
In giving back to benefit others in need, Gabe participated in five Polar Plunge fundraisers for Special Olympics. Gabe was willing to give homeless persons his last few dollars or provide hot coffee/snacks or hat/gloves to people holding signs on street corners. Gabe also helped his mother distribute poppies on Memorial Day to area veterans. He went above and beyond to shake hands and encourage people when attending First Church of the Nazarene with his parents, and also at numerous places in the community. He was extraordinarily compassionate by helping a woman in subzero temperatures in a wheelchair get unstuck from the snow on her way to the hospital.
Memorials can be directed to the family or GoFundMe page.
The family is very grateful to the staff at Mercy Medical Center, Mercy Hospice and Heritage/Care Initiatives.