Cara B. (Gates) Salsgiver

January 23, 1973 ~ July 18, 2022 (age 49)


Cara Beth (Gates) Salsgiver, age 49, passed away on Monday, July 18 th due to natural causes.
Cara was born on January 23, 1973 to Cindy Curran of Oil City (formerly of Bradford, PA) and Thomas
Gates (formerly of Bradford, PA), both of whom survive. Cara graduated from Venango Christian High
School in 1991. She was naturally intelligent and academics came easy to her. During her high school
years, she was involved with the volleyball team and enjoyed her experiences with it immensely. She
worked at several local businesses over the years and recently worked at Telereach. She was proud of
the work she did and the raises she obtained during her time there; she appreciated many of her co-
workers as well. The last position she held was completing administrative work for a local mail
contracting company.
Cara was preceded in death by her maternal grandmother, Mary Lynn Jackson (Bradford), paternal
grandfather, Gordon Jackson (Oil City), paternal grandmother, Colleen Gates and paternal grandfather
James Gates, Sr. (both of Bradford).
Cara is survived by her parents, her children Jacob Salsgiver and Dylan Salsgiver of Seneca and Logan
Bemis of Oil City, her sister Hillary (Gates) Wisniewski, brother-in-law Mike Wisniewski, and niece Freya
Wisniewski of Oil City, and numerous aunts, uncles, and cousins.
Cara had a deep love for her “son shines” and was very proud of all that her boys accomplished
academically and athletically. She enjoyed going to their sporting events and spending time with them.
Anyone who talked with Cara knew she loved her sons more than anyone in this world and beyond. Cara
also loved her niece, Freya. They enjoyed hanging out and watching HGTV shows together. Freya was
her “punky.” In general, Cara enjoyed spending time with family and friends, listening to music, reading,
and laughing. She really loved the ‘Cow Bell’ skit on Saturday Night Live. Often she would laugh at her
dad’s stories about his exploits during high school and she found her mother’s excessive purchasing of
cleaning supplies to be a source of humor. Cara loved to share funny pictures, videos, and memes with
friends and family online. When she was younger she enjoyed going to concerts and took her sister to
her very first concert. Cara loved iced coffee and her great aunt’s Texas sheet cake. She had a soft spot
for babies, children, and animals. Her mother’s dog, Jax, loved Cara quite a bit and was always so happy
when his “sissy” would visit him.
Many of Cara’s recent years were focused on her struggles with mental illness and addiction and her
efforts to live in recovery. She attended local AA/NA meetings and developed friendships and supports
through meetings. Cara completed training to be a Peer Support Specialist. She was so proud of being
able to do that and was able to see the potential in others who were battling addiction and mental
illness. Cara often spoke about meeting people where they were at in their journey and loving them
from that place in order to provide them with hope and encouragement for recovery. She understood
that it was something that needed to come from a place of positive regard for others and to look
beyond the person’s struggles in order to see the person themselves. As a family we ask that those
reading this see Cara for her humanity: see her as a daughter, mother, aunt, sister, cousin, and friend.
See her as someone who was hurting, but continued to try to find her way. This is how we want her to
be remembered. She would want you to see her not just for her struggles, but to recognize she was a
person who mattered and, despite the challenges throughout the years, she was valued and loved by
many. We share this part of her life because, realistically, it was part of who she was and we are not
ashamed of telling this aspect of her story. Cara knew the more that we speak openly about addiction
and mental illness the more we help to fight the stigma and shame that prevents so many individuals
and families from getting help. Cara would want people to know they need not be ashamed and they
can work on finding hope in recovery.
There will be no visitation or funeral. The family will plan a Celebration of Life at another time. The
family requests that if people feel moved to do something to honor Cara and her memory they can
make donations to Family Service Drug and Alcohol Program or Precious Paws Animal Rescue.
The Rinsel Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.
Condolences may be sent at

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