Submitted by his daughter
Gary (My Dad) was a great kind person. He was easy going‚ caring and a joy to be around. Growing up my dad was the vice president during his high school days and was a great athlete. He excelled in football‚ basketball‚ and baseball sports.
My dad had always wanted to be a firefighter‚ he would do anything to achieve what he wanted. My dad began getting involved with the Show Low Fire Department in the end of 2001 and became a volunteer firefighter in 2002. My dad wanted to be full time but he had a back and leg problem that began to get worse and caused him to limp. He had surgeries to try to fix it but nothing seemed to work. So he thought well if I can’t be a full time firefighter a volunteer is still better than nothing. He also worked at Foxworth Galbraith a lumber company while being a volunteer. He would do anything to lend a helping hand to anyone needing it. My dad began teaching fire safety classes and doing anything he could to help.
I remember my dad had just got back from having a surgery like a week before this particular incident occurred. My son and I were at my dad’s house visiting for the weekend and we were sitting around in the living room and he had his radio scanner on and there was a call that said a little girl got hit by a car and it happened to be right down the street from his house. So my dad thinking that he is better get his shoes on and darted out the door and down the street to help the little girl until the fire department got there. He was caring and considerate and loved to help.
My dad loved so many thing but 3 more than others. He adored and loved his grandson; he was the heart of my dad. He also loved his family‚ and he loved his job. My dad had many friends that he loved being around and just hanging out with. He had a great attitude about things and would always look toward the brighter side of things.
My Dad loved to fish and would head to the lake any chance he got. He also loved to hunt‚ and the White Mountains are known for their hunting season which is one reason my dad moved there.
On June 18‚ 2004 me‚ my husband‚ and our son headed to Show Low to see my dad. We got there late Friday night and were so tired. My dad had all sorts of energy and wanted to visit and play with his grandson. So we stayed up for a little while and around 10:30 pm we headed to bed and my dad was like I feel like staying up but I guess I will see you tomorrow. So we hugged and kissed each other goodnight and said I love you. The following morning June 19‚ 2004 my dad had to go to work so we didn’t see him before he left. That day he was the head of a chipping crew and was with his friends and everyone was joking around and laughing. Well around 1:00 pm my dad’s friend noticed him slumped over and then my dad fell to the ground. He called man down and the crew that was with my dad ran over and began trying to revive him. My dad suffered from a severe heart attack that day.
My Dad was a lovable‚ friendly‚ and smart person. He was also a wonderful father‚ son‚ brother‚ papa‚ and friend. He will be forever missed.
I will always cherish the memories I have of my dad and will keep him close to my heart.
Gary is survived by: Erin‚ Kyle & Kyesun Dowdy (Daughter‚ Son in Law and Grandson)‚ Norbert & Barbara Archibeque (Parents)‚ Justin Archibeque (Brother)‚ Norbert JR. & Joanie Archibeque (Brother & Sister in law)‚ Margaret & Hank Vigil (Sister & Brother in Law)‚ and many nieces & nephews‚ aunts & uncles‚ and cousins.