She's remembered as an "angel."
"Going to watch the sunset and reminisce about the last sunset we saw together from here." Gabby's father Joseph Petito tweeted from Florida on March 20, the day after his daughter's actual birthday, along with a photos of a pier on the Gulf of Mexico.
That same day, TJ Schmidt remembered Gabby on Instagram, posting a smiling photo of his slain sister.
"Love you so much gabbs Ik this is late but happy birthday," he wrote on March 20. "I miss you more then words can describe."
Gabby's best friend Rose Davis also shared on Instagram a heartfelt video montage featuring clips of the two pals laughing and having fun.
"A very happy heavenly birthday to the woman that taught me what I deserve!," she shared on March 22. "Hope you're having a great day up there angel."
Gabby's posthumous birthday comes less than two weeks after her parents filed a lawsuit against the mother and father of her presumed killer, Brian Laundrie. The suit alleges that Christopher and Roberta Laundrie helped their son cover up Gabby's murder. The Petito family is seeking "compensation for the damages they have suffered" as well as additional relief.
Gabby's case garnered national attention in September 2021 when she was declared missing while on a cross-country road trip with her fiancé Brian, who had mysteriously returned home to Florida solo, in her van. On September 19, her remains were discovered at a camping area in Bridger-Teton National Forest in Wyoming and her cause of death was ruled a homicide due to "blunt-force injuries to the head and neck, with manual strangulation." Brian famously disappeared during the investigation.
After a month-long search, he was found dead in Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park in North Port, Fla., Personal items belonging to Brian were discovered near his remains including a notebook in which claimed "responsibility" for Gabby's death.
Gabby was laid to rest and honored in a public memorial service on Sept. 26, 2021. Family, close friends and hundreds of mourners gathered in Holbrook, N.Y. to pay their respects.
"Gabby is the most amazing person I've ever met," her father said in his eulogy. "I'm asking that you guys to be inspired by the way she treated people, all people...She genuinely loved people."
When you leave here today," he added, "be inspired by what she brought to the table. I couldn't be more proud, as a father."
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