Gavin Bryce Auerbach

Gavin Bryce Auerbach, 21, of Newport News, Virginia gained his wings at Riverside Regional Medical Center on October 23rd, 2022 with his loved ones by his side. He was born to Kristy Campbell Cook of Newport News, Virginia and Mark Auerbach Jr. of Seaford, Virginia on June 11th, 2001 in Newport News at Riverside Regional Medical Center. Gavin attended Deer Park Elementary, Gildersleeve Middle School, and graduated from Menchville High School in 2019.

It should be known when Gavin came into this world he was a defined fighter. He was born with a 3% chance of survival, immediately placed in the NICU and had to undergo a heart lung bypass after being transported to Georgetown University after only his second day on Earth. This moment was ingrained to all who loved him that he was going to be a warrior for life. His parents have routinely said they had collected just as many casts as trophies from such an active childhood that was never short on fun. While he despised waking everyday for school having over fifteen set snoozes on his alarm, he was wise among his years and old soul if you will and actually ended up being the teacher for everyone who met him. His values are to be admired, respected and mimicked to love family with all your might, to help those less fortunate and was known to be the friend that always dropped everything at a moments notice to be present.

Gavin was currently employed at the Newport News Shipyard in the X36 rigging department. It should be known that he has had a job since he was fifteen years old when he initially worked as a lifeguard and eventually at Food Lion. In the Summer of 2020, he took advantage of an amazing opportunity and moved out on his own at nineteen to OBX. He stayed working at the Food Lion in Corolla where he made some lifelong memories with his best friend Cameron Crumpler otherwise known as Cam.

Gavin’s smile was infectious and everyone loved his one dimple. That also came about after riding his bike at age six where he fell off and managed somehow for the handlebar to damage his cheek. To those that knew him knew his free spirit personality was one of his strongest character traits. He exemplified wanderlust. He loved to drive. He could always be count on to be the one to drive on long family vacations when others didn’t feel like it. He looked up to his big brother, Jordan and father, Mark, immensely and was hell bent on making them proud. As a loyal friend, son, grandson, nephew and cousin he made time for anyone and everyone. Gavin never met a stranger – every person in the world was just a friend he hadn’t met yet. His determination and strong work ethic was admired as there was nothing he failed at or gave up on. Once he was set on something, there was no stopping him. It was nothing for him to just go out to dinner by himself for a margarita or pull over, open the bible and read scripture.

He loved his Toyota 4runner truck with all he had, cherished all of his tools, enjoyed going camping with friends and wanted to be surrounded by family as much as he could. He was known for blasting classic rock and old country music for everyone to listen to while watching him dance in the garage. He is notorious for staying up all night to finish a project. It was not unusual to hear an impact wrench at 2am in the neighborhood. At a young age he loved taking things apart and putting them back together. From skateboards, bikes to cars, he loved working with his hands and then got into woodworking and jewelry making for the special ladies in his life. One of those special ladies was his Momma. He was her legit sidekick and everyone knew it. Kristy was a steadfast influence in molding him to be the caring, loving man he was and how to take care of others first by watching her. He also grew up and had a general interest even at such a young age watching his father and both of his papas do what they loved on the side and in trades so much so that even when they didn’t think he was watching he was taking it all in and incorporated those skills into his adult life. He loved being able to understand how “things worked.”

His lifelong dream that he routinely spoke about to family was that he wanted to build a house himself on a lot of land so he would be able to sit naked on the front porch surrounded by nature. He wanted to get married and “get a few puppies” he said. He wanted to become a crane operator at NNS and was currently fast tracking that process. Even though he was there for a short time, he had made a name for himself. He had several nicknames at the yard. One was “Lion O,” which was an old cartoon character from Thunder Cats. Another was “High Speed” because he was just a roller and did not hesitate to jump in and help out when needed. The one that stuck was “Teddy” because of his teddy bear personality, which isn’t surprising.

Gavbug, his nickname for life, to those that knew and loved him is survived by his mother, Kristy Cook, and husband, Ronnie Cook; his father, Mark Auerbach Jr. and wife, Connie Auerbach; his brother, Jordan Auerbach, and wife, Alexis Auerbach; his brother Zachary Cook; his sisters, Alex and Avery Slayton; his maternal grandparents Glenn and Wanda Campbell; his paternal grandparents, Mark and Jackie Auerbach; his maternal great grandmother Mary Catherine Smith, his aunt Kelly Carter and husband, Dennis Carter; his uncle Mark Campbell and wife Jessica Campbell, his uncle Wayne Auerbach and wife Whitney Auerbach; bonus grandparents Delbert and Glenda Owens and Robin and Helen Stephenson; his true love Lauren Howard, numerous cousins, many other extended family members and two members from the three amigos Cameron Crumpler and Jenna Tippett.

Gavin loved to hear encouraging words, quotes and passages from books. He was routinely the encourager to all he met. Gavin always took charge to express the will to take care of things and for others to lean on him. One of the things he recently sent to his true love Lauren which is important to mention for all to hear: “There are storms ahead, but I will be okay because you’ll be right here through it all.” He would want everyone to know that he will be okay.

Funeral arrangements are being handled by Peninsula Funeral Home in Newport News, Virginia. His service will be held at 11am on Saturday, October 29th at the funeral home. Following the service, we will be celebrating his zest for life at the Cook’s family residence. Any arrangements may be sent to Peninsula Funeral Home.


  1. Cathy & Chips McCallum

    We are so sorry& cannot believe this. He was so young and such a kind young man. My heart aches for all of the family. As a mother I can’t imagine loosing a child. Prayers for all of the family. God Bless

  2. Josh A.

    My heart goes out to Mark, Kristy, Jordan and extended family. I will always have fond memories of this kid…he was the quintessential firecracker, and a hoot to watch grow up. Prayers and condolences to you all. He’s walking with legends now.

  3. Carol Carter

    So sad that such a wonderful young man has lost his life at such a young age. Prayers and condolences to all his friends and family. It will be a hard journey to go on without him, but know he is watching over you all and take it just one step at a time. 🙏🙏

  4. Susan Locke

    Kristy , Mark and Jordan and the rest of the family. I’m so incredibly sorry for your loss of such an amazing young man. Kristy , I remember the day you gave birth to Gavin he was such a little fighter . Gavin was such a sweet soul . Praying for all of you during this difficult time 🙏🏻

  5. Karron Baazemore

    My prayers and condolences go out to the family. Gavin was a very hard worker always leaned in to help out his co-worker when he wasn’t busy himself. Gavin showed the initiative and willingness to learn his craftsmanship. My team and I will really miss his presence in our crew, and we will definitely remember the great times we had. Miss you brother!

  6. Steve and Jennifer Cook

    Thinking and praying for you all in the weeks and months ahead. We are so sorry about Gavin. He always had a huge smile whenever we would run into him.

  7. Rachael Moore

    Gavin was such an amazing ray of sunshine. He really, truly cared for and loved everyone. He lived his life with so much passion. I’ll miss catching him passing by with a sweet smile for his Mama, and a joyful hi! Gavin, I’m so glad that of anywhere you’d be, that I know you’re in heaven making new friends!

  8. Laura Briggs

    I’m so truly deeply sorry for your loss. I met him when I moved to VA for that short time and everytime I saw him he always had a smile on his face. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family!!

  9. June Childrey

    My thoughts and prayers are with All of Gavin’s family. I only worked with Gavin a short time but he really struck me because he was so friendly and genuine. He definitely had goals that he was working on and I’m happy that he occasionally reached out to me for guidance or my opinion. I am so sorry for your loss.

  10. Brian Johnston

    Mark and the family my heart goes out to all in this time of need. We are deeply sorry to hear the news. We will be praying for all. Gavin rest easy buddy and watch over your family!

  11. Monica White

    I remember him from his time at Deer Park. He was such a sweet, cute boy who clearly grew into an amazing young man. I am so sorry to see he is gone too soon but clearly he left his mark on this world. Praying for you all!
    Nurse White

  12. Tom & Lesia Howard

    Gavin made us smile outloud!! He has a permanent impression on our fabric of life. We love you Gavin. Mom & Dad Howard

  13. Vicki Rogers

    Dear, dear Kristy. Ricky & I send our love & condolences to you & the family. Broke my heart when I heard the news. Curl up in Gods lap & let your tests flow. God will carry you through this process of losing your amazing son. None of us can know this pain your going through. Give yourself time. We love you & would have loved to have known Gavin, he sounded like one amazing young man. So truly sorry honey.♥️

  14. Nikki Hogge

    Our deepest condolences to Mark, Christy, Jordan and family. May God be with you during this very difficult time. Prayers for comfort, peace and healing.

  15. Linda and Jim Schroer

    Kristy, Jordan, Mark and family, we will always remember Gavin’s kind, sweet, loving, happy personality. He, Cameron, and Jenna have so many memories together. He will be greatly missed. Our thoughts and prayers are with all of you.

  16. Vicki Sparks

    My deepest condolences to Gavin’s family. I pray that God will comfort you in this very difficult time. Gavin was a sweet boy. My thoughts and prayers are with you. Mrs. Sparks

  17. Dottie Jackson

    Heartfelt condolences and prayers to comfort the hearts of all and the strength to see you through this difficult time of losing your precious son,Gavin.May God’s word bring peace to surround your hearts..🙏🙏🙏💔🙏🙏

  18. Deborah McDonough

    Gavin was the sweetest boy, and his smile lit up the room. I loved being his librarian at Deer Park. Please know I am thinking of you and praying for peace and comfort for all of you. Mrs. McDonough



  20. Sean Kerlee

    I had the distinct pleasure of meeting Gavin at NNS. I am a Crane Instructor and was struck by his willingness to learn at a rapid pace. He was a good young man and his future was bright at NNS. NNS is a worse place without him, but Heaven is much better off with him. My Condolences to his family

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