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Gabe’s Garden at Windsor Park Elementary School

Gabe Velasquez

Back in late December, Gill’s had the pleasure of donating the planting of a new pollinator garden at Windsor Park Elementary School for kids, parents, and teachers to enjoy this Spring and for years to come. James Gill designed the garden in an empty parking median using mostly Texas native plants like Kidneywood, Texas Lantana, Frogfruit, Skeleton-leaf Goldeneye, and more to attract different birds and butterflies. This is a very special project for us, and we chose to dedicate it to Gabe Velasquez, long time Gill landscaper and friend who passed away.

A few words about Gabe from James Gill:

“Very early in the growth and evolution of Gill’s, we were so fortunate to connect with a wonderful young man, Gabe Velasquez. He quickly learned the basics of landscape installation and became quite a craftsman, with high personal standards of quality work and materials. His good nature and work ethic made him a favorite of our Gill team and our customers. 

We lost contact with him for several years, but managed to lure him back, and he not only retained his high personal standards, but was so willing to mentor younger crew members. 

Tragically, we lost Gabe during the Covid pandemic, and the folks at Gill’s have been looking for some kind of worthy tribute. We think Gabe’s Garden at Windsor Park Elementary School, which will bring butterflies, humming birds, and thousands of smiles to children and their parents, would suit him just fine.”

The volunteer team for Gabe’s Garden included current Gill landscape crew leaders Arnold Charles and Jimmy Chavira, who both worked with Gabe for many years, Aracely Negrete (Master Naturalist from Kingsville), Sara Jose (Oso Bay Wetlands Preserve Manager), Jesse Jenkins (Gill’s new owner), and the whole Gill family; James and Sally, son Stuart, wife Anne, and granddaughter Bea, + son Trevor and girlfriend Catherine in town for the holidays!

Gill’s has had a connection to Windsor Park Elementary for many years. Stuart and Trevor Gill both attended! Here they are helping plant Gabe’s Garden all these years later!

Windsor Park Owls, Trevor and Stuart Gill
and helper, Bea!

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