The Gabbi Family

The Gabbi Family

Alex Gabbi was first introduced to Wonders & Worries when his wife, Heather, was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in May 2010. From the beginning, they made a promise to each other to be open and honest with their children, Nico (10), Maya (7), and newborn Luca, but they knew they needed support to help their children to understand. They turned to Wonders & Worries and child life specialist Corinne Barnickel for assistance. Not only did Corinne help the children cope with their mother’s cancer, but through their participation in the Wonders & Worries’ programs, the entire family gained a key support network.

So many families fall within the organization’s scope.

Heather passed away in July 2013, and Alex became a single father of three. He knew he had to change his demanding career in order to meet his children’s needs, and decided to teach at the McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas. He also helps spread awareness of the importance of hereditary cancer screening (Heather had the BRCA mutation) and gives back to Wonders & Worries so other children can receive the same services that have been so vital to his family’s recovery.

Today, Nico, Maya, and Luca are 15, 12, and 5, respectively, and Alex continues to support Wonders & Worries. He hosts an annual Celebration of Life event in memory of Heather that raises funds for Wonders & Worries.  He is the current volunteer lead for the Wonders & Worries Teen Council and has also served on the finance committee. He understands that Wonders & Worries relies solely on the support of the community, and he appreciates the multiple ways that others can get involved with the organization – by providing financial support, raising awareness, or volunteering time and talent through the fundraising events.

I believe that every child deserves the right to be equipped with the best tools.

Alex believes Wonders & Worries has tremendous potential for growth. “So many families fall within the organization’s scope,” he says. “I believe that every child deserves the right to be equipped with the best tools to deal with a parent’s life-threatening illness, regardless of their location or financial situation,” Alex feels that geography, as well as socio-economic status should not be a barrier from a child receiving the services that Wonders & Worries provides. Recently, an opportunity became available to use his passion for the mission by developing a plan to grow Wonders & Worries beyond the Austin area. “There are exciting times ahead for Wonders & Worries,” Alex says, “and the support of our donors can help us achieve an even brighter future.”