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Steven R. Gable, 73, of Granger, Indiana, passed away unexpectedly on Saturday, September 25, 2021 in Chicago, IL. He had spent the day cheering the Fighting Irish with his wife Patricia and friends. After returning home to his condo in Chicago, he fell ill.
Steve was born on April 11, 1948, in Peru, Indiana, to the late Robert and Elsa (Griebling) Gable. He is survived by his loving wife, Patricia (O’Hara); daughter, Margaret (Ryan) Wroblewski of Flower Mound, TX; sons, Andrew (Nicole) Gable and John (Catalina) Gable of Chicago, IL; grandchildren, Daniel, Grace, Abigail, and Thomas; stepmother, Elva Gable of South Bend, IN; sister, Julie (Michael) Englert of South Bend, IN; and stepbrother, Kurt (Sonya) Carlson of Mishawaka, IN.
Steve graduated from Washington High School (1966) in South Bend, Indiana; the University of Notre Dame with an English degree (1970); and the Indiana School of Medicine (1974). After completing his neurological residency at I.U., Steve founded South Bend Neurology. He practiced there for 30 years, including many years with his brother-in-law, Dr. Michael Englert. He then became the Vice President of Quality at St. Joseph Regional Medical Center (SJRMC). He served on many boards, was the co-director of the Stroke Unit, the medical director of Select Health, and served as the medical director of the SJRMC neuro-diagnostic department. Additionally, he taught neuroanatomy to I.U. medical students in South Bend.
Steve kept busy in retirement, teaching classes, giving talks, dissecting Notre Dame football and basketball in a neighborhood club, and volunteering as a tour guide at the Notre Dame Basilica. He taught literature and history classes at the Forever Learning Institute, including a virtual semester of Zoom classes. He traveled, played cards, and spent lots of time with his children and grandchildren.
As an undergrad at Notre Dame, either driven by his great thirst for education or a twist of fate, he met his wife, Pat, when he enrolled as the only male in a Renaissance Literature course at St. Mary’s College. Their courtship is filled with stories he loved to recount, including their first date to a Blood, Sweat & Tears concert and the moment Steve knew he found his forever love. They went to a coffee shop after the show and in a time “when people were putting all sorts of nonsense in their coffee,” Pat ordered hers black. They were married on June 19, 1971, in Belmont, MA, and celebrated their 50th anniversary this past June. They both continued to take their coffee black throughout their marriage and began each day over the past year and a half with timed, often-heated, New York Times Spelling Bee competitions.
His professional accomplishments, albeit impressive and vast, will forever take a backseat to the joy he brought to his family, friends, and community. He was the life of the party, every party, even those he loudly proclaimed he did not want to attend. He was a lover of order, rules, and routine, but thrived in chaos, sometimes unwittingly. He was a wordsmith and a poet, often on command and in demand, crafting verse for friends’ weddings and special occasions. He startled easily, sneezed loudly, and shouted with unrestraint when the Yankees, Giants, or Irish lost their bearings. He was consistently the voice of calm to those around him and was a “rock” for many who knew him.
Steve knew more about history, literature, sports, and dead presidents (and their wives, and their vice presidents, and their preferred breakfasts) than most know about their own pets. He loved to share these facts (and German verb conjugations) with any willing or unwilling audience. He hated to miss a moment to air a good complaint or perform a strongly worded monologue, and when his audience inevitably wound up in laughter, he equally enjoyed feigning defeat. He was so very funny—laugh out loud, laugh with and at others, laugh at himself funny. He brought levity when it was most needed and hilarity when it was often unexpected. He was a beacon of light in our lives.
Steve was a husband and a dad and a papa who told his wife and children and grandchildren how proud he was of them and how much he loved them so very often. In the midst of all the things he left unfinished—all the dinner plans with friends, the upcoming trips, the grandkids’ games, the parties, the tours, the classes—he leaves behind no doubt in our minds as to how much we meant to him. He was not afraid to cry when things were sad or moving. He was effusive with his love and praise, and his heart was far bigger than his life was long.
They just don’t make them like Steve Gable anymore. We will miss him forever.
Visitation will be on Sunday, October 3, 2021 from 2:00-4:00 p.m. at the Palmer Funeral Home–Hickey Chapel, 17131 Cleveland Road, South Bend, IN, where a rosary service will be held at 2:00 p.m. Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Monday, October 4, 2021, at 9:30 a.m. at the Basilica of the Sacred Heart on the campus of the University of Notre Dame. Interment will take place at a later date at Cedar Grove Cemetery.
Donations may be made in Steve’s honor to Forever Learning Institute, 54191 N. Ironwood Road, South Bend, IN 46635 (www.foreverlearninginstitute.org); or to the University of Notre Dame. If donating to the university, please direct your gift to the Basilica of the Sacred Heart in memory of Steven Gable. Gifts may be made online at giving.nd.edu; by phone at 574-631-5150; or by mail: University of Notre Dame, Department of Development, 1100 Grace Hall, Notre Dame, IN 46556.
Condolences may be left for the Gable family at www.palmerfuneralhomes.com.