Gabriella Marshall was thrilled to learn that she was on the right track to pursue her passion for becoming an artist.

Gabby Marshall

The 2020 graduate of Carmel High School, known to her friends as Gabby, had recently switched courses and at the last moment decided to apply to the Herron School of Art instead of doing theater at Ball State University. She worried that she would not be accepted for not taking an art class, but after quickly putting together a portfolio, she later found out that she had made the cut.

That dream tragically ended on the afternoon of October 23rd when the car she was driving crossed the Allen County’s median and collided head-on with a semi-trailer truck. Gabby, 19, the only passenger in the vehicle, was pronounced dead at the scene. The police are still investigating what led to the accident.

Andrew Marshall, Gabby’s father, said his daughter was a typical teenager who loved her friends, wrote for the Humane Society and volunteered, but also struggled with uncertainty and adjusted at times. He said it thrived on a deadline and often hesitated until the last minute with homework, but then turned in an “absolute masterpiece.”

“She worked on her art the same way,” he said. “She was very well under pressure.”

Andrew Okerson, technical theater instructor at CHS, agreed. One of his favorite memories of Gabby was her ability to perform intricate video projections during a state competition last year.

“At the end of the night we were told we had the best technology in the competition,” said Okerson. “That was not least thanks to Gabby. Of course she was incredibly humble, but I could tell she was also very proud of her team for making a great show possible. “

CHS theater director Maggie Cassidy said she was impressed with Gabby’s heart to serve others. She said Gabby wanted to set up a free theater camp for children who would otherwise not be exposed to such an opportunity.

“She really wanted to be able to influence younger people and be a good and positive role model,” said Cassidy.

A GoFundMe account was set up to help the family cover their funeral expenses. Donate to gofundme.com/f/memorial-gabriella-marshall. Donations can also be made in Gabby’s name to the Humane Society for Hamilton County or any literacy program to honor Gabby’s love of reading.