The livestream link above will lead to a recording of the service.
At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.
144 Divison Ave S
Grand Rapids, MI 49503
Kid's Food Basket
1300 Plymouth Ave NE
Grand Rapids, MI 49505
Below is the contact information for a florist recommended by the funeral home.
Life Story / Obituary
Mark and Rebecca (Welde) Mattison welcomed their son, Gabe, into their family on September 2, 1999. With curiosity, adventure, and love, Gabriel Mattison lived a life rich in family and friends. Gabe possessed a heart that felt more than most and insights that often astonished. A sensitive and compassionate young man, he had a wonderful sense of humor and brought much light and joy to his family and friends. A loving son, grandson, nephew, cousin, and friend, Gabe was a gift to all who were lucky to know him. While our days with him were far too few, the precious gift of sharing his life will long be treasured in the hearts of those he loved.
An only child, Gabe grew up on the northeast side of Grand Rapids on Chandy Drive NE since he was about five years old. A kindhearted boy, Gabe always had strong, intense feelings and was a good kid. As a young kid, Gabe enjoyed a week each summer at a cottage on Little Whitefish Lake, where he loved to swim and later kayak. The family also took a trip each year to Florida and Louisiana to see his grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins on his dad’s side of the family.
Gabe began his schooling at East Oakview Elementary School in Northview. He later attended Highlands Middle School and Crossroads Middle School before graduating from Northview High School. Highlands Middle School was nearly across from his house, and one of his favorite places throughout most of his life was the wooded area behind the school. The woods always provided a place for adventure, exploration, discovery, and peace.
Though childhood, he tried his hand at various things, including soccer, playing saxophone, and singing in the school chorus. None of these seemed a good fit. An excellent student, Gabe excelled at Spanish, and he always enjoyed playing games. When he was young, he particularly enjoyed playing board games and cards with his mom. Though each new game began with eagerness, as the excitement wore out, he would get a new game to play. The cycle continued on and on. As he grew older, he continued to enjoy the games from earlier years and expanded his skills to computer games. In high school he discovered Japanese anime, and he was soon enjoying both playing games and watching movies with English subtitles.
Gaming quickly became the center of many of Gabe’s friendships. Whether playing board, role-playing, card, or computer games, he was often the organizer of groups getting together. Though Gabe had many different friends, he was especially close with the C4; The Classic Four were schoolmates who spent a lot of time together. Even after high school, the group kept in touch.
Another one of Gabe’s fascinations was rocks and crystals. Recognizing Gabe’s passions at a very early age, his dad encouraged his interest by joining the Indian Mounds Rock and Mineral Club with him. It was as a part of this group that Gabe grew his interest and even had the opportunity to mine in the gypsum mines under Grand Rapids.
Through high school, Gabe worked during the summer at Kentucky Fried Chicken, then Meijer, and finally at Lowe’s. After graduating from high school, he made his way to Michigan State University. An honors student, Gabe began his schooling with an eye on astrophysics. It didn’t take long for him to gravitate towards his lifelong love of geology. Despite the challenges of the pandemic, Gabe chose to stay in Lansing last year, continuing his studies and working at Lowe’s. When his lease ended, he returned home to stay with his parents for a couple of months before school and his job as a resident assistant was to begin again this fall.
Typically more serious, Gabe did have a sense of humor – albeit a corny one. Most recently, he talked about his future and the possibility of pursuing geology research and ultimately becoming a university professor. He experienced struggles through life but was able to articulate many of those with his parents and friends who were there to lend their support and encouragement. His struggle on earth ended on Saturday afternoon in one of his favorite places.
While Gabe’s sudden departure leaves us stunned and short of breath, may we find comfort in our many treasured memories and in knowing he is at peace. May we also find comfort in carrying his legacy forward. With each walk we take in the woods, rock hunt we embark on, game we gather to play with friends, and moment we lead with our hearts, we celebrate the many ways Gabe gifted our lives. In this way, we keep his beautiful spirit alive and inspiring others as he so inspired us.
Gabriel Mattison, age 21, of Grand Rapids, passed away August 14, 2021. He is survived by his parents, Mark and Rebecca Mattison; grandmother, Charlotte Lawson; aunts, uncles, and cousins, Gail & Steve Brinks, Daniel & Krista Mattison (Gracie, Audrey, and Graham), Michelle & Scott Griswold (Scotty, Gayla, and Mattie) and several friends. He was preceded in death by his grandparents Michael Mattison and Edward & Jeanne Welde. The service to remember Gabe’s life will be held on Thursday, August 19 at 11 AM at Heritage Life Story Funeral Home – Van Strien Creston Chapel, 1833 Plainfield Ave NE. Friends are invited to visit with his family on Wednesday from 6-8 PM at the funeral home, where they can also sit together and enjoy one of his favorite board games or card games. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to either Degage Ministries or Kids Food Basket. To read more about Gabe, to share a favorite memory or photo, or to sign his guestbook, visit www.heritagelifestory.com