He was born on February 13, 1938 in the Bronx, NY, to the late George and Anna Salinsky Gabriel.
Pete lived in several locations in upstate New York and in St. Petersburg, Florida, before moving to Sunbury, PA, where he graduated from Sunbury High School. He married Sandy McCormick Gabriel on November 19, 1961 at the United Church of Christ in West Milton, Pennsylvania.
He was an air policeman in the Air Force and was honorably demobilized in 1959. While on active duty in the Air Force and stationed in the Azores, he began his career as a broadcaster on the radio and television of the armed forces.
Pete’s radio career progressed at various radio stations in Pennsylvania, including Harrisburg and Scranton from 1959 to 1970. From 1970 to 1972, he was program director at WBUK in Columbus. From 1972 to 1978 he worked at various radio stations in Kansas City, including KCMO, as an on-air personality, KUDL as program director and on-air personality, and KAYQ as an on-air personality. the antenna. While working at KUDL in Kansas City, he also hosted his own television show on KMBC, “Gabriel’s Horn”, hosting films all night and doing celebrity interviews.
He has also done sports broadcasts for several radio stations including play-by-play for Sunbury High School football and play-by-play for Susquehanna University football on WKOK, Color Columbus Golden Seals Hockey on WBUK-FM in Columbus, “Time Out” High School Football Sports Show on WNEP-TV in Scranton, Pa., And public speech for the following: Missouri University Football, Big 8 Holiday Basketball Tournament, NAIA Basketball National Championship Tournament on KCMO and KUDL in Kansas City, Youngstown Hardhats football, Youngstown Pride basketball and Boardman High School basketball on WKBN in Youngstown.
Pete has received numerous awards and accolades, including Camp Hill Outstanding Young Man of the Year Jaycees in 1966; first place winner in the Macleans Toothpaste National Disc Jockey Competition for Most Original Publicity, winning the National Mercury Cougar Car Award; 1967 Camp Hill Jaycees Man of the Year; and United States Jaycees Presidential Award of Leadership in 1967. In 1996, he was inducted into the Ohio Broadcasters Hall of Fame.
He founded the Pete Gabriel’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade in 1979. He organized and led the parade for the first 15 years, when he left it to the Irish community. The parade continues to be a big event in the Mahoning Valley to this day.
Pete has been involved in many community services and received numerous civic awards, in addition to serving on numerous boards of directors in the communities in which he lived. His services included, but not limited to, the Jaycees, Leukemia Society, Muscular Dystrophy Association, Heart Association, Masonic Lodge, Aut Mori Grotto Clowns, Boardman High School Boosters and Lady Hoopsters Club, Boardman and Austintown Optimists, Shriners, Kiwanis, Boardman Little Spartans, March of Dimes, and most recently as Lieutenant Governor of Zone 1, Ohio Optimist.
Pete loved his career, working in many formats before entering the world of “chat”, where he was known for his friendly laughter and compassionate approach to his interlocutors. He liked to get involved in projects that benefited his community.
Pete retired in 2005 after 48 years of radio broadcasting, radio management and radio sales. His interests were sports, art, history, poker and golf.
Pete is survived by his wife, Sandy; three children, David (Missy) Gabriel of Canal Winchester, Wynne (Steve) Coleman of Rio Rancho, NM and Lori (Mike) McGlone of Boardman; grandchildren, Gabby and Catie Coleman, and Jack, Maggie and Michael McGlone; and half-sister, Carla Dee Blakely in Virginia.
In addition to his parents, Pete was predeceased by his sister, Judy Warren; and his half-brother, George Bard Gabriel.
Call hours will be from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday, August 29, 2021 and from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. on Monday, August 30, 2021, at the Higgins-Reardon Funeral Homes, Boardman-Canfield Chapel, 3701 Starrs Center Drive. Pete’s funeral will be celebrated on Monday, August 30, 2021 at 11 a.m. at the funeral home. The family and the funeral home will apply an appropriate health protocol according to CDC guidelines. The entombment will take place in the Green Haven Memorial Gardens.
Pete’s family sincerely thank Mercy Health Home Care and Mercy Health Palliative Care, especially Dr. Minotti, for their loving care, and the Veterans Administration for their support and resources.
Contributions to Pete’s memory can be made at the Austintown Optimist Club, 3140 Raccoon Road, Austintown, OH 44406; the Boardman Optimist Club, 755 Boardman-Canfield Road, D-1, Boardman, OH 44512; or to a charity of your choice.