MOUNT CARROLL—Maximilian John Pio was born Aug. 19, 2021. He is named after St. Maximilian Kolbe, St. John the Baptist, and St. Padre Pio. His confirmation name is St. Irenaeus.
Maximilian was born premature at 34 weeks and from the beginning was not healthy. Maximilian was given the same cross of suffering as his deceased brothers, Xavier and Benjamin. They were all born with a genetic, peroxisomal disorder that does not allow cells to function, affecting all organs and systems, especially the nervous system. Life expectancy was less than one year.
Maximilian suffered every day from this disorder. A total of nine weeks of his life were spent in the hospital with many tests, procedures and surgeries done. He was able to stay home for the last four weeks of his life under the very watchful care, love and hugs of his family. So many family and friends were able to visit and hold him. The nurse said he received more love in his short four months than most people get in their lifetime. He touched the lives of so many people. Maximilian passed away on the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Dec. 12, 2021, at home.
He will be greatly missed. He is loved by his loving parents, Matthew and Elizabeth Gabbard; siblings, Alexander, Zachary, Hannah, Ignatius, Veronica, Ambrose, Helena and Augustine; grandparents, uncles, aunts, cousins, caregivers and friends. Maximilian joins in Heaven with his two brothers, Xavier and Benjamin; and his grandfather, Clyde Gabbard; along with many other loved ones waiting for his arrival.
A Latin Funeral Mass will be held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 18, at St. Iranaeus Catholic Chapel, 2811 N 2nd St, Clinton, Iowa. Burial will be in the Oak Hill Cemetery, Mount Carroll, and a luncheon will follow at the Mount Carroll Church of God. Visitation will be held from 4:30-7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 17, at the Law-Jones Funeral Home, Mount Carroll, with a Rosary Service at 7 p.m., and also from 8:30-10 a.m. Saturday, prior to the Mass at St. Iranaeus Chapel in Clinton.