Earl John Marks Jr.

Earl John Marks, Jr.
July 6, 1926 - July 14, 2014

Earl passed away peacefully from this world on July 14, 2014 at his home in Long Beach with his wife, Mary, at his side. He was 88. He was born and raised in Chicago, IL. He attended Hyde Park High School and excelled in academics and baseball. Immediately after graduation he enlisted in the Navy. The Navy sent him into the V12 Program which allowed enlistees to earn a degree at one of a number of colleges and universities across the country. Earl attended the University of California Berkeley (Class of '49) and was ever after a loyal Bears fan. Go Bears! He enjoyed many happy years attending the "Big Game" (Cal versus Stanford) with his wife, Mary and daughter, Melinda, who is also a Cal Alum. Earl was very active in the Cal Alumni Long Beach Chapter for many years. He served on the Cal Scholarship committee and as President of the Chapter.

After graduation and commissioning he taught Naval Gunfire classes at Northwestern University, then was ordered to Line Officer School at Fort Ord, Monterey, CA. He served with the Pacific Fleet aboard the USS Rupertus and that ship's stay in the Long Beach Naval Shipyard introduced Earl and Mary to Long Beach.

Earl met and married his wife, Mary, in Chicago, IL. in 1954. They celebrated their 60th anniversary on June 20th of this year.

After 13 years of service in the Navy, attaining the rank of Lieutenant, Earl resigned from the Navy in 1956. Earl enjoyed sharing his memories of the military with his son-in-law, Ben, who was a sailor during the Vietnam War. Earl was hired at the Long Beach office of Dean Witter as a Stock Broker and Investment Advisor. Earl's grasp of the securities business, his knowledge of capital markets and his even-keeled temperament benefited multiple generations of his client families. He enjoyed working with his longtime partner, Ron, and his associate, Delisa, for years. He retired from the firm, now Morgan Stanley, as First Vice President in 2011 after 54 years.

Earl gave his time and talents to many civic organizations including the Kiwanis Club, where he served as member and President. Earl became an active member of the Long Beach Rotary in 1975. His contributions to Rotary through the years were aligned closely with his business acumen: primarily the investment committee for the Rotary Scholarship fund, and also plant visitation. He was a Paul Harris Fellow. He served as President and was recognized this year for 38 years of perfect attendance! Earl was involved with the Children's Dental Health Clinic for many years and served as the Head of the Investment Subcommittee of the Children's Dental Foundation of this organization also.

Earl was a huge supporter of all things "Long Beach". Earl, his wife, Mary, and daughter, Mary Ann, enjoyed museums, restaurants and the Long Beach Aquarium together. He loved the original Pike in downtown Long Beach and the wooden roller coaster, Cyclone. He shared this love of roller coasters with his children and grandchildren. He worked in the Long Beach World Trade Center and watched the Long Beach Grand Prix drivers race by his window. He watched and supported the redevelopment of downtown Long Beach and Shoreline Village. He enjoyed the arts in Long Beach and the mild weather.

Earl loved the outdoors, especially back packing, hiking and fishing. Earl climbed Mt. Whitney with his son, E.J., when he was in his 50's. E.J. and Earl enjoyed many other back packing and hiking experiences together! Two of Earl's favorite fishing destinations were Siberia Creek near Big Bear and the upper lakes above Lundy Canyon in the Eastern Sierra's. Earl's son-in-law, Dave, introduced him and the family to the hikes and fishing in the Lundy Lake area. Both locations required strenuous treks which Earl did into his 80's.

Earl and his wife, Mary, were bicycling enthusiasts. They regularly traveled the LA River bike path from their Los Cerritos home to Shoreline Village. They rode in both the LA and Long Beach Marathons for many years - both were well into their 80's when they concluded those adventures!

Earl loved this country and everything it stands for. He took vacations specifically to visit the Presidential Libraries and Museums. He enjoyed these tremendously with his wife, Mary, and his daughter, Jennifer. Earl was always more interested in making life great for others rather than himself. One of the few things he truly loved, for himself, were the Swedish almond cookies his daughter-in-law, Harriet, made for him. They were an absolute "Labor of Love" to make and he relished every bite!

Earl was completely devoted to his wife and family. He attended every music recital, sports event, school and extra-curricular event his children ever had. He loved the cruise to Alaska he took with his family and the many family vacations they all enjoyed together including his extended family, Shawnda, Amanda, Ian and Scott. Earl took great pride in attending all of his children's and grandchildren's high school and college graduations.

Earl is survived by his wife of 60 years, Mary; son, E.J. (Harriet) Marks; daughters, Jennifer (Dave) Keller and Melinda Marks (Ben Brynildsen); grandsons, Wesley (Elizabeth) Keller, Preston (Miep) Keller, Brandon (Brenna) Keller, Matthew Marks, Clay Marks and great grandsons, Chase Keller, William Keller, Tristan Keller, Jacob Keller and his sister, Lorraine (Hillert) Vitt of Erie, PA. His daughter, Mary Ann, passed away 12 years ago.

A Celebration of Earl's Life will be held in late August. For information on the service or to make a contribution in Earl's memory to one of the charitable organizations he supported, please contact Jennifer Keller at 775-386-8807. Please sign the guest book at www.presstelegram.com/obits.

Published in the Long Beach Press-Telegram on Aug. 17, 2014