Abigael Bellows

Abigael Bellows

Wednesday, July 22nd, 2020

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Obituary for Abigael Maree Bellows

Abigael Maree Bellows, while swimming with friends on July 22, 2020, was overcome by the strong currents of the Willamette River in Springfield, Oregon and lost her life. She was just 22 years old, but she wouldn’t want to be known for her life being cut short, she would want to be recalled for the way that she LIVED. Abigael, in her short time here, made sure that every breath, every moment counted. She lived her life authentically, without apologies, and savored every experience—the sweet, the painful, the rich, the seemingly insignificant and the milestones.

As a child, Abigael showed signs of maturity, intelligence and wonder at the world at a very young age. Born to young parents, Abigael would attend college lectures at University of Pittsburgh with her dad (Garth Bellows) at the age of two years old. Professors and other students marveled at her ability to sit and quietly color and read while her Dad studied Spanish. She explored the city of Pittsburgh with her parents, walking to Carnegie Library, Schenley Park, and the restaurants and shops of Oakland daily—her favorite being Dave and Andy’s Ice Cream; her penchant for sweets lasting throughout her life. Because they lived in a tiny apartment for several years, being outside, amongst the trees, the flowers, the grass and the breeze was important to the family and they traveled to every park in the greater Pittsburgh area, with Abigael pointing out the tiniest of details that might have been otherwise overlooked. She was a voracious learner. She loved libraries and story times and the “word of the day” that her mom (Tressa Bellows) challenged her with every day. Abigael once, as a tiny toddler, pronounced that a dandelion puff blowing in the wind was “mesmerizing”. Her ability to find beauty in nature and be able to articulate it so brilliantly is indicative of the child she was and the adult she became

Eventually, Abigael became a big sister to her beloved Eliza and the family moved to the suburbs. She began kindergarten already knowing how to read and became an instant little leader in her school and the community. At the age of 5, after a playdate where she was dismayed to see graffiti marring the equipment of her neighborhood playground, she wrote a letter to the mayor of her small town asking him to make the playground a cleaner place for kids to play, along with a hand drawn picture. The mayor responded to the letter, cleaned the graffiti and installed lights to deter future graffiti.

When Abigael became a big sister for the second time to “HER” baby, Ivy, she was a pro. At age 7, she would often greet Ivy in the morning, lift her out of the crib, cuddle her, make her smile and bring her to mom for feeding. She was both anxious and excited when her family decided to make the move back to her dad’s hometown of Chambersburg. Since she was new to the area, she decided she would make herself known as an actress. She enrolled in the Totem Pole Theater Camp one summer, stole the show at the end of the two weeks and then got actively involved in the Chambersburg Community Theater, snagging the coveted role of Susan Walker in Miracle on 34th Street. She still remained committed to bettering the world she lived in. After her parents traveled to Jamaica and showed Abigael the conditions of the rural school they visited, she decided to hold a fundraiser for the school’s needs, rather than having a traditional birthday party. She was able to send several suitcases of basic supplies to the school, along with a financial donation.

Abigael continued her leadership and community involvement through middle school, participating in student government, theater, track and civic organizations. She made the best friends of her life in that time, and the tight-knit group of girls remained friends until she drew her last breath. During that time she attended Camp Falling Spring, which began her quest to know more about spirituality.

In high school, at CASHS, Abigael was known for always having a smile on her face, befriending those who may have otherwise felt invisible and for being incredibly generous with her spirit. She was an eager learner, participating in AP and honors courses, was a member of National Honor Society and graduated in the the top ten percent of her class. She remained best friends with the group she cemented in sixth grade, but welcomed many others into her circle. She was awarded an academic scholarship to Duquesne University and went back to her beginnings, in Pittsburgh.

At Duquesne University, she continued to explore the world around her with wonder and astonishment. She became passionate about food, its origins, and how it affected daily lives and health. She took a comparative religions class and became intensely interested in yoga, meditation, and Eastern religions. After her sophomore year, she decided that she needed to learn by experience rather than textbooks.

Abigael left for Costa Rica to teach English in a small school in Manuel Antonio, then with a week left before her return home, she decided to travel to Pachamama, an eco village. She was forever transformed by her travels and the spiritual growth she experienced. She decided not to return to Duquesne University, in search of authentic travel, world and life experiences, and moved to Eugene, Oregon. She spent time learning how to propagate plants on a farm in New Mexico; she worked at a vegan food truck in downtown Eugene; she made salves; she returned to Costa Rica; she worked as a waitress. But, she was none and all of those pursuits. She relentlessly chased joy—refusing an existence that was anything less than one of adventure, rich experience, spiritual growth and personal fulfillment.

Abigael was the cherished daughter of Garth and Tressa Bellows, the sister of Eliza and Ivy, the granddaughter of Preston and Joan Bellows and Bruce and Sue Hamm, the niece of Matt and Alicia Bellows, Chris Hamm, Todd and Jodi Bellows, Ted and Julie Arnold, Tim and Tina Bellows, Deborah Cline, the cousin of many, and the friend to countless people.

A memorial service will be held at Heritage Restored Farm, 8877 Newburg Road, Newburg PA 17240 on Autumn Equinox, September 22 from 4:30-6 PM. All Covid-19 restrictions will be honored, so please bring your mask, and wear a bright color or floral print, so that we can honor the color and beauty of Abigael’s life.

The family asks that in lieu of flowers, donations are given to the Abigael Bellows Memorial Scholarship Fund through the CASD Foundation. This fund will directly benefit students wishing to travel and study internationally. The link is and the address is CASD Foundation, 435 Stanley Avenue, Chambersburg PA 17201. In the memo line, please notate Abigael Bellows.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Abigael Maree Bellows, please visit our Heartfelt Sympathies Store.
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Service Details

  • Service

    Tuesday, September 22nd, 2020 | 4:30pm
    Heritage Restored Farm
    8877 Newburg Road
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email |
    Tuesday, September 22nd, 2020
    All Covid-19 restrictions will be honored, so please bring your mask, and wear a bright color or floral print, so that we can honor the color and beauty of Abigael’s life.
    Send Flowers for Abigael's Service
    Guaranteed delivery before Abigael's Service begins

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Erma Elliott

So very sorry for your loss.
Comment | Posted at 08:23am via Condolence

The Amsley's

"Abigael Bellows" will remain in our hearts forever. She brought so many gifts to our life. We will always love Abby and will miss her immensely.
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The Amsley's planted a memorial tree for Abigael Bellows
Comment | Posted at 07:27pm via Memorial Tree

Mary Finucane

I was so very sorry to hear the news about Abby. I was one of her high school teachers. She wrote me one of the nicest thank you notes of which I still have. She definitely was a ray of sunshine! She will be sorely missed and so very sorry for your loss.
Comment | Posted at 07:24pm via Condolence

Stephanie Salisbury

So much love and strength are being sent to the family of Abigael. She appears to have been a wonderful soul who is now an angel leading us.
Comment | Posted at 02:06pm via Condolence

Melody Jansen

In loving memory of Abigael , a loving spirit who graced this earth for 22 years.
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Memorial Tree Planted

Melody Jansen planted a memorial tree for Abigael Bellows
Comment | Posted at 02:46pm via Memorial Tree

Why light a candle?

This is why you should light a candle..

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