Gabriel "Gabe" Rodriguez
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Gabriel "Gabe" Rodriguez

Shelburne - Gabriel "Gabe" Rodriguez, 45, of Shelburne, VT passed peacefully on June 8, 2019 surrounded by so much love and admiration. The average man's obituary won't do, because this obituary isn't about the average man, it's about an exceptional man.

Gabe grew up in the Bronx, NY and attended St. John's Kingsbridge where he met his first love, basketball, a cornerstone in his life. A Hall-of-Famer at Fordham Prep, he earned a scholarship to play basketball at the University of Colorado Boulder. As countless teammates, the coaching fraternity, and players can attest, there was no one who knew the game better. But Gabe's true gift wasn't how he played the game, it's how he shared it. Ever selfless, Gabe's lone goal in basketball - and life - was to make others better. Make the extra pass. Share the ball. Share the love. Share it all, and share he did.

Gabe's deliberate kindness, gentle way, and exceptional gift for friendship and conversation made him invaluable wherever he was. Gabe's career at the University of Vermont left a lasting mark. Gabe was the ultimate utility man, coaching the Men's Catamounts basketball team, advancing the University's diversity agenda, and lastly as the Coordinator of Transfer Admissions, sharing his passion for creating connections and helping to welcome and enroll the most qualified students. In the final year of his life he called UVM Women's basketball games on the radio with his son, Will, sitting by his side. UVM clearly recognized the rare individual in their midst, by creating The Gabe Rodriguez Award, ensuring that his spirit and dedication will never be forgotten. No surprise, the award will be given annually to someone who gives themselves fully to University, someone who shares their gifts beyond a mere job description. Someone like Gabe.

Gabe was easy going, kept life simple, and maintained perspective. He did not complicate things and stayed incredibly positive. He always leaned in, embracing whomever and whatever crossed his path. Gabe was exceptionally close with his family, both immediate and extended, and they were a guiding force throughout his life. Gabe's kids were his whole world. Nothing was more important to him than Macie "Mae Mae" Jane and William "Champ" Robert. His love, kindness, patience, and empathy made him a phenomenal Dad. Though the years were short, he will leave a lifetime of memories and a lasting impression on all.

"How you doing…What you got going on?"Even in his last days, Gabe conjured up the strength to share his love, asking these questions to those by his side. He lived his life caring deeply about others and carving out the space to relish in his relationships. Inquiring about the people in his life and making them feel important was one of the many ways he showed his selflessness. Perhaps these parting questions were his ultimate gift. Delivered with a classic lilt that only Gabe possessed, they remind us to share, to give, to love.

Gabe is survived by his wife, Sara Wool Rodriguez and his children, Macie and Will. He shared a special bond with his in-laws Michael and Martha Wool. His beloved siblings Miguel Rodriguez and wife Tricia, Queenie, Joyce, Georgina, Henry and Sean Ogirri adored Gabe. His special "Tity" Georgina Then, cousins Orlando, Oliver and Omar Antigua, brother/sister in-law Travis & Kate Gardner and Andrew & Ali Hirt and a huge network of extended friends and family. Gabe will join his dearly loved mother, Griselina and father, Miguel as they predeceased Gabe. Gabe collected people, not things and will be missed by countless friends and family both near and far.

We would like to give special thanks to Dr. Jesse Moore, Dr. Meredith Collins, Dr. Chris Anker, Dr. Paul Unger, Dr. Mitch Norotsky, Jess Langer and the Nurses on Baird 6, Ali Waltien, Tara Graham, Dr. Jaina Clough, and everyone at the McClure Miller Respite House. You provided expertise, compassion and friendship through this long process and we consider you friends.

There will be no calling hours. A service in memory of and to celebrate Gabe will be held on Saturday, June 15, at the University of Vermont Davis Center in the Grand Maple Ballroom at 11 a.m.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a contribution to the following: McClure Miller Respite House, 3113 Roosevelt Hwy, Colchester, VT 05446, Children's Miracle Network at UVM, Attn: Ali Waltien, Child Life Specialist, UVM Campus Children's School, https://www.uvm.edu/cess/ccschool.




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Published in The Burlington Free Press on Jun. 10, 2019.
MEMORIAL EVENTS
JUN
15
Service
11:00 AM
University of Vermont Davis Center in the Grand Maple Ballroom
Memories & Condolences
Guest Book sponsored by Stephen C. Gregory and Son Cremation Service
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21 entries
June 21, 2019
Our condolences to Mike, Martha, Sara, and the entire family. We are so sorry for your loss.
Rich & Terri Feeley
June 14, 2019
Much love to you, Sara, and your beautiful children. Gabe was an extraordinary person. I am very grateful for what he was able to give to my Gabe and all of the Fast Break team in those formative years of their lives. My regards too to your dear parents. You have my full condolences.

Kenny Peck
Peace Corps Mexico
Ixmiquilpan, Hidalgo, Mexico
June 14, 2019
To the Family and Friends of Gabe.
We send our sincere condolences. May you find comfort and much needed strength in the hope found at Hoesa13:14
June 13, 2019
My deepest condolences to the family for the loss of your dear one.
Please take comfort from your fond memories and the
promise found at Isaiah 33:25.
L Rae
June 13, 2019
Sara and family - I am so sorry to hear this. I am sending warm thoughts to you during this difficult time.

Beth Stern
Beth Stern
June 12, 2019
Sara, We are shocked and terribly saddened to learn of Gabe's passing. Our hearts are heavy as we feel your loss. From the moment we first met him we could see why you were so happy. He had to be very special to hold your heart. We pray that the memories of the love you shared will forever be a blessing. Love to you and the kids. Joy & Geoff Newman
Joy & Geoff Newman
June 11, 2019
Dear Sara, Macie and Will,
I am so very sorry.
Linda LeCompte
June 11, 2019
Dear Sara, Macie, Will, the whole family- Many people who knew Gabe at Un of Colorado are in sadness with you. I hope we see you in August with your children. Love and prayers surround you from near and far. Love, Connie, Mark Tuft
Connie Tuft
June 10, 2019
Nancy Westbrook
June 10, 2019
Nancy Westbrook
June 10, 2019
We will miss you and your generous, beautiful heart, Gabe. Sending condolences to all your loved ones.
Marie Vea
June 10, 2019
Deeply saddened to learn of Gabe's passing -- wishing you strength and love as you mourn a good man gone too soon.
Rich Bundy
June 10, 2019
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June 10, 2019
It's been 11 years since I worked with Gabe, but he never changed. In true form, I'll always remember Gabe, with everything he was dealing with, being the one to call me two months ago as I was walking into the stadium to call the national championship in one of his favorite events....even though he was in extreme pain and dealing with things far more important than I, you would never know it from talking to him. He was and is an inspiration through how he viewed the world even in the most adverse circumstances. I'll miss you buddy and can't tell you how devastating it is to know that you won't be there when we come back to Vermont. The only solace is in knowing that the pain is gone and you're in a better place.
Dave Koehn
June 10, 2019
Dear Sara,

So, so sorry to hear of Gabe's passing--you and your family are in my thoughts, Sara.
Mary Hayden
June 10, 2019
I met Gabe and his wife once, in the final days of his life, and they both left an incredible impact. Sending much love and strength to his wife, beautiful children, and all of the other family and friends that he has left behind.
Haley Duquette
June 10, 2019
Words can never be enough, but I send so many prayers of peace, comfort and strength to the Rodriguez family. I did not see Gabe everyday at UVM, but when I did he always greeted me with a smile, hug and a "how are you doing?". It was wonderful to know him and I and others are the better for it. May your loving memories hold you, keep you and guide you. There is no walking alone. May God be with you at this time and forever!
Wanda H-G.
wanda heading-grant
June 10, 2019
I knew Gabe for many years through UVM admissions and he always made me feel welcome. He will be missed, my heart goes out to his family!
Heather Palow
June 10, 2019
Sara, Macie & Will, Hugs to you during this difficult time. I didn't know Gabe but it seems he was an exceptional human being and you are lucky to have had him in your life. Peace to you.
Colleen Leary
June 10, 2019
Michael Ortega
June 9, 2019
Lewie and Margaret
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