ForeverMissed
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This memorial website was created in memory of our loved one, Gary Mazzone, 61 years old, born on July 20, 1955, and passed away on February 23, 2017. We will remember him forever.
February 23, 2022
February 23, 2022
Dear Gary, Another year that you've been gone. Miss you my friend ❤️
July 30, 2021
July 30, 2021
Not a day goes by Gary, that I don’t think you and the many lives you touched. You are dearly missed.
February 23, 2021
February 23, 2021
Dear Gary, Thinking off you often. Please take care of our grandson, Neil Nighbor Nowakowski, he joined you in Heaven on December 5, 2020. He was just a baby. There isn't a day that doesn't go by that we don't think of you! ❤️Eva
February 23, 2021
February 23, 2021
Another year, and I think of all the volunteers that didn’t get to spend time with you.   I am sure you have welcomed the many Underdog Alumni that have arrived.  They had terrible beginnings, but we gave them a second chance.  Now it is your turn, everlasting love and cuddles.  Miss you.  But a new era of rescue volunteers really missed you.   Give Earl, and Hank a big hug for me.
July 20, 2020
July 20, 2020
Hi Gary!   I am sure you welcomed our Great Dane Earl, with open arms!
  You are showing him around. Giving him a big fluffy bed. Telling him we love and miss him so much.   Just as we love and miss you every day.
Wherever your spirits/souls are, it is a better place.
February 23, 2020
February 23, 2020
Dear Gary,
There isn’t a day that I don’t think about you.! Love & miss you so much!!
July 24, 2019
July 24, 2019
Still so hard to except a world without Gary.  Gary was so much fun, a room or gathering was made better with his presence.  Our dog Rescue, Underdog Rescue MN, is still in mourning.   His dynamic trio were adopted together and continue to live a happy life, that will keep Gary smiling.   Miss you Gary, you are 1 in a million.
July 21, 2019
July 21, 2019
I can only say again what a wonderful caring person Gary was, so truly special......miss talking to him....
March 27, 2017
March 27, 2017
We all lost an incredible friend in you, Gary. You were an amazing human. I was lucky to get to know you at Borders, and then even luckier to work side by side with you for several years at Magers & Quinn Booksellers. You always made my day and everyone else's brighter with your extraordinary personality. Seeing your beloved girls trailing around the store after you always put a smile on my face.

Your laugh was infectious, your faith was inspirational, and your love of dogs and devotion to ending animal cruelty was humbling.

I wish you could see all the love expressed in your absence- you've touched so many lives. I am so honored to have known you, and am better for having had you in my life.
March 18, 2017
March 18, 2017
There is nothing I can say about Gary that everyone else has said...he was truly one of a kind. His generosity,kindness,love just shone from him. I talked to him a few weeks before he passed and I will always treasure that conversation. He could make me laugh. We were with TWA in Chicago together and have been able to keep in touch via Facebook and calls. I would have given anything to be at his service but
I live in SF and can't travel. I believe he and Loren are now together in happiness . What an incredible man to have so many wonderful tributes from so many who loved him dearly. Very few people in life can say they were loved by so many. I tear up every timed I think of him, such a special heart and a true good soul.......
March 16, 2017
March 16, 2017
I didn't know Gary well, he being with TWA and I with Republic/NWA, but as fellow airport workers we always ran into each other and I thought he was the friendliest, funniest dude back when airline jobs were rather fun and the airport was a real community. It used to be so easy to uprgrade friends and family on flights if the seats were open and, lo and behold, leaving MSP one day on TWA for a cruise, there was Gary working the flight and that was the first time I and my friends were able to ride "up in the bubble" on a TWA 747! He was one of those "old souls" we always hear about. He was good people. May he rest in the sunshine of God's love.
March 15, 2017
March 15, 2017
I met Gary on a training ride for an AIDS to Chicago. With Gary's warm, inviting personality, we became immediate friends. On our first training ride we shared our HIV status, drugs and doctors. We talked about our loves, our love for cycling. We were Amigos from the start. He talked about Loren and his loss. He definitely always talked about his other love, Elsie. On the rides to raise dollars for AIDS we always made it a point to start the ride together. We didn't always end at the same time, but I'd be there when he road in. I was always the pedal to the metal kind of rider. Gary had to chat with everyone. On one ride to Chicago, our last day in Chicago was cold and rainy. Rounding a corner I slipped on some oil on road and got a severe case of road rash. It hurt, but mostly it looked horrible. Because of the rain we decided to go to the airport early and see if we could get an earlier flight home. He had me act like I was in pain, and with all the bandages, he got the airline ticketing person to not only get us an early flight, but first class seats at no extra cost! I can only remember this guy with a big smile on my face. One in a billion. Will miss you but know Loren and Elsie were there to greet you, and that makes me smile more.
March 14, 2017
March 14, 2017
Thank you, Gary for your beautiful smile, kindness and humor! Gary was instrumental in helping us launch the Popkin Psychiatry Family Resource Center at Hennepin County Medical Center. He spent extra time to help us select wonderful, inclusive books. He understood how important it is for people with mental illnesses and their families to have a safe place to learn and recover. Gary's favorite part of the project was finding the right children's books--ones that made kids feel as important and valuable as they are. His enthusiasm and concern for the project was incredible. We were unfortunate to have known him a short time, but he will be remembered at HCMC for his heart and compassion...and his wonderful laugh.
March 12, 2017
March 12, 2017
Gary was one of those wonderful surprises I encountered as a brand new author just learning the ropes - he warmly welcomed me to Magers & Quinn and became a personal friend who shared his life and joy with me. I will miss his doggy updates and his beautiful spirit. I am honored by his friendship, today and forever.
March 9, 2017
March 9, 2017
From Lorraine Teel
Gary Mazzone has been the heart of 11th Avenue in South Minneapolis since 1981. When he first moved in with Monique, a miniature French poodle, all on 11th Avenue and beyond became friends as often happens, through dogs. This continued with Elsie, Emma, Wanda, Grace and the long line of fosters Gary adored. Gary’s partner, Loren, who sadly passed away in 1995, also quickly became a fixture on the block. Whether out helping the neighbors shovel, wave a sweet hello to all the children passing by or just outside gardening, both Gary and Loren were beloved by all. As Gary’s immediate neighbor, it was gratifying to see him finally land at Magers & Quinn Booksellers. Gary always had a new book he wanted you to read, a new story to tell. He had also worked at a big box bookstore, but he his home was in the independent small business community and he did whatever he could to promote Minnesota’s mom and pop shops. Gary also shared his heart with the many charities he supported. Putting in thousands and thousands of miles on his bike, Gary rode cross state and cross country year after year to support AIDS charities as well as the one Lung Association ride he did in honor of Loren’s dad. He was a volunteer buddy and all around helper for the Minnesota AIDS Project over many years. He also volunteered at Grace House and helped so many transition from this life to the next. Gary’s ability to raise money and support from his friends was phenomenal. No one could turn him down. When Gary asked for your support, you responded … why? Because you knew if Gary was involved it must be a great cause. And Gary loved children. He was godfather to a new born, he was big brother to many young kids at his church – and he took that seriously. He loved to introduce children to reading, to nature and most of all to the love of animals. No tribute to Gary Mazzone would be complete without emphasizing the love he had for those least fortunate amongst us. His eyes would well up as he told the tale of his many rescue “girls” – how long they had been caged, how they had never bonded with people before and how they could now finally live out their final days in freedom and with love. Thank you Gary for all you’ve been, all you’ve done and all you’ve left us. Years ago, Gary gave me a daily meditation book, The Color of Light by Perry Tilleraas, that he had originally given to Loren. The inscription on the inside cover reads, “To Loren. Read, enjoy, learn, grow and share this book with me. And if you need me, I will always be there for you. Love Gary.”
March 9, 2017
March 9, 2017
Dear Sweet Gary - We started TWA, together on April15, 1974 - I had just turned 23 (the day before) and you were only 19. We went through training and then worked the horrible 1:00 PM - 9:30PM (Tu/We off) shift. We talked a lot and I will always treasure those conversations. Rest well my friend and give my best to Loren - you're in First Class all the time now....but oh, we do miss you. LUV, Eva Rudzinski Nowakowski
March 8, 2017
March 8, 2017
Dear friend,
Gary, I am so grateful for the love and compassion that you have brought to my whole family. I remember the day after church I blew the engine on my car and you helped me to push it to the curb and make sure I got home. The beautiful way you served as President of our congregation and when I took over how you made sure that we met and you made the change of position so easy and continued to always check on me through the entire time that I served. Your encouragement when I decided to adopt our puppy mill girl, Buffy. Your stories of your beloved partner and the pain and lose that you experienced. You shared with us your beautiful puppies. Emma, who you always said saved your life. I know she will miss you so much. When George had his stroke last may the tears you shed with us. The hugs and kisses that gave us strength. The little angel coins we still carry. I feel like I never got to share enough how much you are loved. Through all the pain and heartache you experienced, you always smiled, shared love, and made us see the love of Christ through your eyes. 
My friend, rest in peace, you have given so much love, oh good and faithful servant. Your faith family will miss you, the world will miss you.
I will miss you.
March 7, 2017
March 7, 2017
Is there anyone kinder than Gary was? I shall think of him often as a truly warm and generous spirit, great community builder, wonderful business owner, and blessed rescuer of dogs!
March 6, 2017
March 6, 2017
Gary and his puppy friends were active participants in Calvary Lutheran Church at 3901 Chicago Avenue South in Minneapolis. He was a special friend to many of us and to me he helped me find books and he shared with me a strong love for God's creation and its care. He knew how to love and he seemed to be especially caring for children and the
excluded ones. His leadership was recognized as he was elected president of the congregation. Gary made an effort to attend every committee and group within the church and was especially supportive
of the outreach and urban arts programs of Calvary. Almost every
Sunday we greeted each other with a touch or a hug and I knew he
cared about me. His loss from the heart of our community will be
difficult. The fact that he lived longer than he expected was a gift.
Thanks be to God for our brother in the faith - a good man and a
person we want to affirm and remember always.
March 6, 2017
March 6, 2017
Gary was most definitely one of earth's angels. Many lives including mine, were blessed by his loyalty, honesty, devotion, and above all, his compassionate and caring heart. Gary will continue to live in the hearts of everyone he touched. God bless you Gary.
March 5, 2017
March 5, 2017
Gary and became friends in the 1990's when he came into my Deli and asked if I would cater his partners funeral luncheon. I had promised Gary I would cater his funeral luncheon and I am happy to say ,we had many years to enjoy each others company. Coming to Calvary Lutheran, Gary enriched my life as well as many others. I have always carried the angel medal he gave me many years ago and it reminds me of his generous heart and spirit.
March 5, 2017
March 5, 2017
I give thanks for Gary and all that he was and remains to my family. After Eric died (husband and dad), Gary said he would always be there for me and my boys should we need anything. Gary was a constant in my boy's life for the last 3+ years. My 12 year old wrote the below, but the same sentiment is shared by my other two sons. The tribute could have been written by any of my three, with the addition of Jacob saying that he loved: going to adoption dog day with Gary, helping care for Emma, Wanda, Grace, or a foster dog during church, and chatting weekly on Gary's phone with Harriette who was in Chicago. 

Gary was like a second dad to me. He would always make me smile and laugh no matter what mood I was in. For my birthday, he would always take me to the bookstore where he worked to pick a book I wanted. We would then go out to eat (almost always mac-n-cheese pizza). We would then go back and make cookies at this house. I will miss not seeing Gary every Sunday, but I know he is always there. Gary, thank you for helping me realize that there are always good people in this world! I will miss you!

May your spirit continue to guide us on our walk in life, reminding us to live with compassion and purpose.

Peace be with you, my friend! Thanks for the memories! 

Love you forever ~ Deb
March 5, 2017
March 5, 2017
Gary, I met you at an Underdog Adoption Event. I thought..."Who is the is new guy?"

Well you came over and introduced yourself.  We have been fast friends since that moment.

You were the person I looked for at every event.  Your outlook was infectious.  You engaged yourself, chatting with folks looking for that forever furry friend.

I find it hard to bring myself to an adoption event, because I know I will be searching the room for you.  Knowing you will never bless an other adoption event is inconceivable.

My only conciliation is that you are with all the furry four legged ones that have gone before the rest of us.

 Take care my friend.  Fill your bed with all those departed pets.

 Love and Miss You.




Cindy

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Recent Tributes
February 23, 2022
February 23, 2022
Dear Gary, Another year that you've been gone. Miss you my friend ❤️
July 30, 2021
July 30, 2021
Not a day goes by Gary, that I don’t think you and the many lives you touched. You are dearly missed.
February 23, 2021
February 23, 2021
Dear Gary, Thinking off you often. Please take care of our grandson, Neil Nighbor Nowakowski, he joined you in Heaven on December 5, 2020. He was just a baby. There isn't a day that doesn't go by that we don't think of you! ❤️Eva
Recent stories

TWA Training

March 9, 2017

A 19 year old Gary, (such a cutie) at TWA Training April/May 1974 - with Eva Rudzinski Nowakowski

March 5, 2017

 

 

 

I first met Gary in 2001 at the Canada to U.S. AIDS Vaccine Ride, a four-day trek from Montreal to Portland, ME.  Gary approached me at the pre-ride registration and asked me if I needed a tent mate.  I was traveling alone and was happy for the company.  I had done two previous AIDS Rides and considered myself a veteran.  My assumption, soon proven erroneous, was that Gary was a rookie.

 

The first day of the ride was 100 miles long, into Vermont along Lake Champlain.  I considered myself a strong rider and finished in good time.  When I reached the camping ground, I was surprised to find Gary already there and to learn that he had showered, changed and set up our tent!  As we talked that night, I learned that Gary had completed as many as ten AIDS Rides in the past and was something of a celebrity – everyone seemed to know him.  So much for the rookie!

 

I also learned of his fifteen-year struggle with HIV and his loss of Loren.  Despite his travails, he was one of the most cheerful people I had ever met.  Over the next few days and evenings I also witnessed his kindness and consideration toward others.

 

On the final day, we chose to ride together, although I must admit that I drafted off him most of the way.  When we reached Portland, Gary told me that it was a tradition of his to go out to lunch at the conclusion of the event.  We hitched a ride into town and found a restaurant.  When we walked into the crowded dining room in our cycling clothes, everyone burst into applause!

 

I stayed in touch with Gary over the years, seeing him whenever I went to Minneapolis on business.  I was even going to join him on another AIDS Ride, from Minneapolis to Chicago, but those plans were dashed when I had a serious accident while on a training ride.  I followed Gary’s own cross-country ride attempt, which I recall was to raise money for Calvary, with great interest.

 

Gary’s positive attitude, his generosity and his kindness were exemplary.   

 

Requiescat in pace, my friend.

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