Mark Louis Smith(1948 - 2013)

Mark Louis Smith passed away December 1, 2013 in Bend Oregon surrounded by family. Born in Oakland, California to Kenneth O. Smith, Jr. and Claudia A. Smith on June 11, 1948 he was raised in the hills above Willits where he developed a lifelong love of the natural world and especially cattle ranching.
After graduating from Willits High School in 1966 and Cal Poly San Louis Obispo in 1972, Mark worked for Production Credit Association in California, Hawaii and Nevada. During a break from agricultural banking he was ranch foreman for a large cattle operation above Alexander Valley in Sonoma County and it was there that he met and married his love, Deborah.
With the responsibility of a new family Mark gladly accepted an offer to open a new PCA office in Burns Oregon. Although the PCA organization folded soon after Mark and his family arrived in Burns they stayed. In the broad, high desert country of eastern Oregon, he knew he was truly home.
Mark and Deborah happily blended into the community and built their home on a hill overlooking the alfalfa fields and cattle ranches in the distance. His experience in ranching and finance allowed him to always find ways to make a good living in Harney County.
Mark was preceded in death by his father and his sister Margaret. He is survived by his wife Deborah, his daughters Sebrina Grillo of Santa Rosa, Gena Anderson and her husband Kenny of Twin Falls, Idaho and his son Chris Grillo of Santa Rosa. He also leaves his mother Claudia Smith of Willits, his brother and sister-in-law Ken and Rose Smith of Willits, and his grandsons Wacey and Brenden Anderson.
A big man with an even bigger heart, there is a sad and vacant place where he once stood in our family.

Published in Willits News from Dec. 6, 2013 to Jan. 5, 2014