Laser, MD, Mark Robert
Dr. Mark Laser enjoyed a journey through life filled with a passion for knowledge and adventure, and service to others. Although he passed away on April 7th, 2020 in Aventura Hospital in Florida from complications caused by a COVID-19 infection, he enjoyed sixty-three years dedicated to pursuing his dreams and caring for his family, friends and patients.
He had a brilliant mind and a daring spirit, and embraced varied academic, athletic, and artistic pursuits. At various times, he was an astrophysicist, a neuroscientist, an obstetrician, a robotic surgeon, a racing sailor, and a master Captain, but what was closest to his heart was being a loving husband and father.
Mark was born in New York and grew up primarily in Long Island. He graduated from Wesleyan University with a degree in Physics and started as an R&D engineer developing optical displays for the Singer sewing machine company. He then went on to Columbia University for a graduate degree in astrophysics. His research, included time at NASA where he conducted an experiment from Houston on a Space Shuttle mission. In searching for something to bring more meaning to his life, he switched interests from physics to medicine, and he entered an MD/PhD program at Yale University as a neuroscientist. While at Yale, he met and fell in love with another neuroscience graduate student, Amy Knorr, and they married in 1989. During his medical rotations he found that his true professional calling was not as a scientific researcher, but to have a direct connection to his patients as a medical doctor. He fell in love again, this time with delivering babies and the joy of bringing new life into this world. He became an obstetrician and gynecologist and founded a private practice in Trumbull, CT, Women's Healthcare, with his partner Robert Deal, where he provided care to his patients, delivering thousands of babies and helping to save many lives. Mark was an Associate Professor of his alma mater, the Yale School of Medicine and an examiner for the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology. He derived much satisfaction in mentoring and training the next generation of Ob/Gyns. He received many honors over the years for compassion, for excellence in laparoscopic and robotic surgery, and for teaching through his affiliation with Bridgeport Hospital.
Even with such a demanding career, Mark delved into many hobbies that took him on incredible adventures; he backpacked across Europe, he bicycled across the United States, he scuba-dived with sharks along with his brothers, Jeffrey and Ken, and he became a private pilot and flew himself and his wife, Amy away on their honeymoon. While his son and daughter were young, he gave up flying and dedicated time to raising his children, Kelsey and Jacob. As they became older, he had time for a new hobby, sailing. He started out by racing small boats at Milford Yacht Club and worked up to sailing in international competitions in Bermuda. He then develped a yearning for bigger, longer voyages and completed a Transatlantic crossing in 2016, accompanied by his co-captain Fady Khairallah and a crew of like-minded sailing adenturers. He became certified as a Master Captain and retired from medicine in 2019 to pursue his dream retirement of living on a boat and sailing around the world with his wife Amy, his soulmate and first mate. Almost exactly 30 years after he flew them off on their honeymoon, Mark took the helm of their boat to sail away to the Caribbean. They shared four amazing months together island hopping before Mark fell ill with the virus which is currently devastating the globe. Although it was too brief a time, he possessed the intellect, courage and tenacity to see his dreams become a reality.
Mark will be remembered for his compassion, generosity, curiosity, intellect, humor, and adventurous spirit.
Mark is lovingly remembered by his wife, Amy Knorr, their children Kelsey and Jacob, his mother Shirley, and brother Ken. He is also fondly remembered by many others whose lives he touched, including his nieces, nephews, extended family, friends, sailors, colleagues, students, and patients.
He was predeceased by his father Milton and brother Jeffrey.
Due to the social distancing policies that we wish to abide by during this ongoing pandemic, in lieu of a formal service, his family has set up a memorial webpage: marklasermemorial.com
. A Celebration of Life for Mark will be held at a future date, once quarantine has ended.
His family requests that memorial donations in Mark's memory go to the Centre Hospitalier Louis Constant Fleming in Marigot, Saint Martin, where Mark was originally admitted for treatment.