"Grande Dame" of Minnesota Skiing Dies in Auto Accident

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Burnsville, MN Jan. 19--More than 600 friendsattended a January 13 memorial service at Buck Hill ski area in Minnesotafor Gabe Cyr, who died in an automobile accident on New Year's eve. She was77 years old and one of the most durable and respected figures amongmidwestern ski area operators.

For the last 25 years, Gabe managed the race programs of Buck Hill.Touching the lives of hundreds of young racers, three of whom became U.S.Olympic team members, she worked closely with racers, coaches andmanagement right up to the day she died.

Earlier, Gabe and her husband, Oscar, had started Pine Bend ski area nearHastings, Minn., in 1954. On a river bank of the Mississippi, with avertical drop of only 250 feet, they literally built a rope tow in theirback yard to entertain themselves and friends. The ski area grew from thatfirst effort. Following her husband's death in 1966, Gabe ran the areauntil 1972. She and her management philosophy were featured in a 1970 coverstory in Ski Area Management.