Annette Patricia Norberg Annette was born in Minneapolis, MN, the youngest of 5 children to Patricia Norberg and the late Robert Norberg. On June 8, 2016, at the age of 52, she peacefully passed of pneumonia, surrounded by family at Haven Hospice. Annette is survived by her mother Patricia Norberg, sisters Susan Poston (Bob) of Hawthorne, FL and Sally Matthew of Jacksonville Beach, FL and brothers Bob Norberg (Susan) Gainesville, FL and Jeff Norberg (Kathy) New Jersey and 8 nieces and nephews and 8 great nieces and nephews. Annette loved to attend the ARC workshop daily, go to garage sales with her daddy on Saturdays, buy groceries with her mom, watch the “Sound of Music” and “Mary Poppins” multiple times on the weekends and she loved to dance. She was a beautiful and sweet girl. She had more friends then any of the rest of the family. She was loved by family, friends and everyone she ever came in contact. Annette was born with Down Syndrome (at that time, it was referred to as “Mongolism”). Annette had her first heart catherization at 3 years old. It was decided she needed open heart surgery. In those days open heart surgery was not being performed on children with Down Syndrome in Minneapolis. Since children with Down Syndrome have lots of respiratory problems the family moved to Florida when she was 3 1/2 years old, for the warmer climate. She has lived in Miami, Tampa and moved to Gainesville in 2013. When she was 8 yrs old she needed heart surgery to live. Her mother took her to numerous cardiac surgeons in Miami. They all said they did not do surgery on children with Down Syndrome. Her former pediatrician from Minneapolis referred her family to Thomas Gentsch M. D., Cardiac Surgeon. Her mother took this tiny, 30 lb. blonde girl to his office. Upon first seeing her, he said “she is worth saving.” Dr. Gentsch and his team of doctors performed this risky surgery, The surgery was done at Variety Children’s Hospital in Coral Gables, FL. on March 2, 1972 when she was 8 years old. They corrected 5 defects, Tetrology of Fallot and an additional defect. After the 7 hour surgery upon removing the heart-lung machine her little blue body turned all pink. Dr. Gentsch was a “Miracle Doctor” and Annette was a “Miracle Child”. We understand Dr. Gentsch is no longer living. But we would like his family to know how appreciative our family is of this “Gentle Man”. He gave Annette a healthy and long life. You can learn more about Dr. Gentsch at http://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/obituaries/article2482140.html. The Norberg family would also like to thank the Miami News for publishing an article on Annette’s surgery, complete with picture of her and her father while in the hospital. Over these 52 years we have seen many changes in the medical care for children born with Down Syndrome and we are grateful. We feel so blessed to have had Annette as part of our family. Annette will be missed terribly by her mother, sisters and brothers. She was “the light of our lives”. Annette was a gift to our family that kept on giving. In lieu of flowers family requests donations made to the ARC of Alachua County, 3303 NW 83 St. 32606. The ARC provides programs and services for persons with developmental disabilities. Annette attended their programs. Internment will be at the Florida National Cemetery alongside her father at a later date. A Celebration of Life service will be held on Saturday June 18, 2016 at Milam Funeral Home Chapel, at 11:00 a.m. 311 S. Main St. Gainesville, Fl. 32601 352-376-5361.