PRESTON, Minn. - Harmony girl Gabriella Lou Brown, known as Gabby, was diagnosed with leukemia just over a week after her 1st birthday. Since then, the Southeastern Minnesota community has rallied behind the Brown family with fundraisers and endless support.
About a year after her fight with cancer began, the disease took little Gabby's life on October 5th. She passed away peacefully in her mother's arms with her family around her.
On Wednesday, the community filled the indoor and outdoor seating and standing room at Gabby's funeral and celebration of life at Serenity Hills Pavillion in Preston. Fillmore Central schools released class at noon to allow staff and students to attend the service.
Two of Gabby's uncles gave the eulogy at her service, sharing memories of Gabby.
"Gabby was two-years-old and through her journey, she created so much hope for those that face the same battle that took her life. Gabby taught people how to pray, not only for her but for others. She showed people how to be genuine and kind. Those that crossed paths with Gabby know that she created a bond with each and every person that cannot be duplicated," said one of her uncles.
"I know where Gabby is going and I know where she got her oxen strength. She got it from her mom and she got it from her dad and we're just so proud of her short life," said another one of her uncles.
Placed on posters and T-shirts, the community's mantra throughout Gabby's fight was "Gabby's got this." At the service, a pastor told the crowd, "Now God's got this. God's got Gabby."
Instead of flowers, the Browns ask people to donate to the Ronald McDonald House.
Gabby's parents, Heidi and Matt, own Estelle's Eatery and Bar in Harmony. The restaurant will be closed this week and re-open October 16th.
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