Abby Schonier-Marcuse left this world on Saturday, April 3, 2021, aged 55, after losing a hard-fought battle with breast cancer that metastasized to her brain. Abby was loved by everyone who knew her, and will be greatly missed. She’s survived by her husband of 14 years, Michel Marcuse, who will love her until the word “forever” loses its meaning, her mother, Nancy Hodgsdon, her sister Andrea Hauglie and brother Paul Schonier, her stepmothers Melanie Schonier and Shirley Schonier, her two dogs, Dexter and Stella who still roam around the house looking for her, and by the countless friends and lives she touched who considered her a sister, daughter, mother, mentor, student, or simply a kindred soul.
Abby was born on December 27, 1965 in Dallas, Texas. She got a business degree from the University of Texas, Austin, but after a couple of stints in Corporate America, she found her true passion and became a fitness trainer and business owner. She sacrificed much to get there, but after the countless gigs as a waitress and other thankless jobs she took while getting the necessary certifications, she reached her dream of becoming a fitness instructor and owning her own fitness studio, first as Abby Schonier Fitness in Sandy Springs, and later as Tiny House Fitness in Avondale Estates.
In addition to the personal training and group classes she offered at her studio, Abby also was known for her Yoga and Indoor Cycling classes at the YMCA and other locations. She developed a devout following, and her classes were always full. Abby was well known as an avid music lover. She always came up with original and appropriate playlists for her classes. She would hear a song and always tell you: “that’s my favorite band!”, regardless of the band playing.
Another passion of Abby’s was dogs. She used to say that she liked them better than people, and always found a way to have two very spoiled dogs around her.
In 2016, Abby was diagnosed with breast cancer. Not one to wallow in self-pity, she took it head-on. She endured the “death by a thousand cuts” that is cancer, never wavering in her determination to “get busy living or get busy dying”. She never succumbed to despair or worry, and wouldn’t have it from anyone else either. After enduring two rounds of chemotherapy, a double radical mastectomy (on Valentine’s day, to boot!), and radiation, she opened the Tiny House Fitness studio in Avondale Estates, which she operated until just weeks before her death.
Even though, at 55, she was taken from us too soon, she’s cheated death one last time by the countless lives that are better, fitter, and healthier because of her, and in whom her legacy will live on.
Because of the Covid pandemic, no memorial service has been planned as of yet. Her family requests that instead of flowers, consider making a donation in her name to a cause that would have been close to her heart, such as the LifeLine Animal Project (a no-kill shelter – lifelineanimal.org), or a reputable cancer non-profit (komen.org, cancer.org).