Mark Anthony Urquiza
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Mark Anthony Urquiza

Mark Anthony Urquiza passed away on June 30th after more than three weeks battling COVID-19. Mark was a high school 400-meter dash state champion and cross-country runner. Mark was known for his infectious energy, strong will, and yes, stubbornness. He met his wife Brenda at Tolleson Union High School. They welcomed their only child Kristin Danielle in 1981. The family loved their annual summer vacations to California where Kristin now lives. Mark, who was often called "Black Jack" by his friends and family, was a lover of nature, the night sky, and politics, and was the life of the party.

Along with Brenda and Kristin Danielle, he is loved and missed by siblings Frank C. Urquiza, Benny C. Urquiza, Richard C. Urquiza, Diana U. Camacho, Gina Urquiza Waters; siblings-in-law Carol Urquiza, Chris Waters, Yvonne Urquiza, and Ray Camacho; his nieces and nephews; the broader community of Tolleson, Arizona; and countless friends. He is preceded in death by his parents Venancio and Ruth Urquiza and his brother George.

Mark, like so many others, should not have died from COVID-19. His death is due to the carelessness of the politicians who continue to jeopardize the health of brown bodies through a clear lack of leadership, refusal to acknowledge the severity of this crisis, and inability and unwillingness to give clear and decisive direction on how to minimize risk. Mark's daughter Kristin Danielle and daughter-in-law Christine are channeling our sadness and rage into building an awareness campaign so fewer families are forced to endure this. We honor Mark's life by continuing this fight for others, even in these darkest moments. Kristin Danielle will be starting an Ofrenda, an altar with pictures of those lost to COVID-19, outside the Arizona State Capitol building on Wednesday evening at 4:30. All are welcome to bring pictures of their loved ones who are suffering from COVID or who have passed. For more information follow @MarkedByCovid on Facebook.




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Published in The Arizona Republic from Jul. 6 to Jul. 8, 2020.
Memories & Condolences
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45 entries
September 16, 2020
God bless you, Mr. Urquiza.
Patty
Friend
September 2, 2020
While I did not ever meet Mark, I feel like I knew him from the way Kristin described him at the DNC and on Lawrence O’Donnell. He sounds like one fine man! I feel for you and your family, Kristin, and send my condolences as well as my support for your new, worthy organization in your father’s name.
David Vezmar
David Vezmar
Acquaintance
September 2, 2020
This is my burning desire, I wish if Mark Urquiza would have witnessed his daughter’s love and respect for him, how much she loved her honorable Godly Father and appreciated being his daughter and how proud she feels life-long to be associated as a daughter of Mark Urquiza!
Ajay Saha
Significant Other
September 2, 2020
My deepest sympathies and prayers for you Kristin and your family.
Gary Stewart
August 26, 2020
My sincerest condolences to Urquiza Family for your loss of Mark, my dear friend. He was such a beautiful spirit inside and out. Such a fun and happy friend to be around. We always kept in touch whenever he would work out of town. The last text I ever heard from Mark was June 20. I then started to hear rumors I didn't want to believe. My heart broke when it was validated. Mark you will be missed by all who knew and Loved you so. God is taking care of you now my friend in the Heavens. . . . Love IB
Inez Belurgi
Friend
August 22, 2020
Kristin and Mrs Urquiza - I am sorry for your loss. I will keep you and your family in my thoughts and prayers.
Jason F
Friend
August 22, 2020
We send our condolences from Los Angeles. We saw the segment on the DNC convention and we are sorry for your loss. Thank you for sharing his wonderful story. Best regards, The Guerra Family
Steve Guerra
Friend
August 21, 2020
Mark (Black Jack) was a close friend not only that he was a brother from another mother. i will miss him. RIP my friend.
Jesse Benson
Friend
August 20, 2020
Mark was clearly a joy and a gift to all who knew him. Only the most adorable, fun-loving, outgoing people enjoy performing karaoke! I am so very sorry for your loss and I hope that your activism yields positive results and, with time, brings a you sense of peace. Your unblinking strength is so inspiring. Thank you for sharing your father’s story with the rest of the world.
Gayle Share
August 19, 2020
I have never met a more enthusiastic person who loved his life. I met Mark many years ago at my work "Max's". Mark was always excited about a new adventure he was going to, birthday party, Nascar races, etc. I never saw Mark without that big wide grin of his that was infectious. Mark we will miss you.
Lou Ann anzaldua
Friend
August 19, 2020
Blackjack was a dear friend who I went to a lot of Nascar race with and watched all sports with him. He was THE LIFE OF THE PARTY. He is dearly missed.
Tony MacTaggart
Friend
August 18, 2020
You were a one of a kind. I will miss you my dear friend.
Diana Scheifen
Friend
August 18, 2020
Blackjack was a one of a kind.
He will be missed by all those who came into his life.
I've known him when he worked with my late husband Don at Gilbert Eng.
I will miss you my dear friend.
Diana Scheifen
Family
August 18, 2020
Blackjack was a one of a kind.
He will be missed by all those who came into his life.
I've known him when he worked with my late husband Don at Gilbert Eng.
Diana Scheifen
Family
August 18, 2020
I never ever saw Blackjack not laughing or smiling. He was a great friend to all he met. No one was a stranger to Bj. He will be missed by all and the world is a bit bleaker without our friend. Hugs to the family
Chris Erario
Friend
August 18, 2020
I’m so sorry for your loss. Thank you for your courage. Your father would be so proud of you.
Bari Brodsky
Acquaintance
August 18, 2020
Kristin, Christine and Family, I am so sorry for your loss. Thank you for speaking the truth during your time of grief. And thank you for working to save the lives of others. Mark would be so proud of you.
Kerry
Friend
August 18, 2020
Dear Kristin - Thank you for having the courage to speak the truth. I am sure your father would be so proud of you. I am so sorry for your loss.
lisa colgan
July 21, 2020
Mark, in Kristin, you have a special soul, who speaks for you and all who have been severely impacted by Covid 19. God bless you. Just read article in NY Times about you.
Rick Carlson
Friend
July 15, 2020
Met Mark in the 70s working at Penn. Mark was always pumped up about everything. Laughed at everything. Always was positive. And silly also. Played a lot of softball in leagues and tournaments with Mark. One of those people you don't forget. Have not seen in years. But not forgotten. Peace Amigo.
Alfred Flores
Friend
July 14, 2020
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Josephine Abrams
July 13, 2020
Dear Kristin,
My sincere condolences to you and your family.
I read about your dad in the NYT. Thank you for writing this courageous obituary and starting the campaign to honor your father's memory in such a brave way.
My family admires yours and supports you for far away,
Anne
Anne
Neighbor
July 13, 2020
Mark was a neighbor of mine for the 1st several years of my life, until my family moved when I was 11. I only have a few memories of Mark personally but they all involve a smile and a beautiful White dog, him holding his daughter or his wife Brenda. He was a great father, husband and neighbor. He will always be remembered that way. Prayers and love always to his family.
Stacie Roland
Friend
July 13, 2020
from Kouts, Indiana: We are so sorry to learn in the New York Times of Mark's death and your heartbreak. We are thinking of him and all of your family and shedding a tear.
Sandra and Larry Holt
Friend
July 13, 2020
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Mason Tromblee
July 13, 2020
May God rest his soul. So proud of you and the obituary, your voice definitely needs to be heard by all. So many lives lost. I pray God continues to give you strength!!! Wishing you peace and above all, the help and guidance we all need during this tragic time for so many.
EB
Friend
July 13, 2020
I am a Canadian, who just read your story. I have read many stories of deaths in the USA, but yours touched my heart. I am so sorry that you are affected by Covid, and so proud of the action you took to place responsibility at the foot of politicians where it belongs.
Thank you for being the change in action that needs to happen. You and your family are in my thoughts.
Mary Smith
July 13, 2020
Extending our deepest condolences to the family. Sorry for your loss. I enjoyed playing softball with Mark on the team "Slugs". Rest in peace my friend.
Dale Wayman
Friend
July 12, 2020
From Denver I am so sorry for your loss. I appreciate your statement regarding the irresponsibility of national leadership. Thanks for sharing on NOR. If I were in Az I would participate in your offense but will do so in spirit. Adelante for your strength! Rest in Power Mr Urquiza!
Carmen
Acquaintance
July 12, 2020
We pray for Mark from our home in Washington State. We too held a funeral locally for our loved one in another county to safely distance and bury our beloved father and spouse. God bless your wonderful family and hopefully your message will be heard. May Mark be in the arms of the Angel's in heaven.
Diane Bowers
July 11, 2020
I went through all of my elementary school and high school years with Mark as a classmate (same grade). I have warm memories of him from those days. Then as "grown-ups," whenever our paths would cross, he was always friendly, kind and enthusiastic to catch up. That was so Mark... and, of course, he had a big smile and a twinkle in his eyes the whole time! The world is without yet another bright light.
To the entire Urquiza family and all of his friends, everyone who has cared about him -- on behalf of the Rojas family (of Tolleson) I extend our heartfelt sympathy for your tremendous loss and wish you peace.
MaryAlice
Classmate
July 11, 2020
I am no one you know; I am from South Carolina.
However I have read about your father and the rage you feel. I am so proud of the obituary you wrote for your father; you stated what needs to be stated.
If I lived in AZ I would place my remembrances at the Ofrenda.
Keep the faith and the strength.
With love and condolences from a stranger but a friend.

S Rico
July 11, 2020
My deepest sympathy to his family and friends. He died needlessly and much too soon. Supporting you in every way possible to prevent such further suffering. Peace.
Jan
Neighbor
July 11, 2020
We send our heartfelt condolences to the family. We always enjoyed our little visits at the old Blockparty, and at the State Fair. Such a shock, such a great loss to his family, friends and the community. May he rest in peace, may your pain be eased, our prayers are with youSincerely,
Carlos & Terri
Photographers at the Fair
Carlos & Terri Ramirez
Acquaintance
July 11, 2020
So terribly sorry for this loss. Condolences and prayers for his family.
Kathleen Harrison
July 11, 2020
God bless you all at this sad and painful time. May your father, Mark, Rest In Peace. I am heartbroken for you all and share both your grief and anger at his needless death. May you all at some time in the future find some semblance of peace. Please know how sorry I am for your loss.
Stella P
Friend
July 10, 2020
God bless you all. You are right. Mark didnt need to die and I cant agree with you more. May you find peace in this difficult time. He is now your Angel and watching you all so proud.
Ann. Erie pa.
Friend
July 9, 2020
Mark Blackjack Urquiza, you will be missed by many friends that you have, but above all mostly your fearing Familia . My condolences to your Family, who had much love for you always !! And to my good friend Benny, I will always remember the good times we had with your Brother, Blackjack !! RIP Big Brother !!
Steve Soto
Friend
July 9, 2020
My heart felt prayers to the Urquiza family for your loss of a loving father, brother, and dear friend to many out there. His honor should be recognized as his daughter and family plan to pursue. That is a very brave decision. Benny my heart hurts for you my friend that is your brother that you share many memories with. Please keep his spirit alive within you and you will feel him come into your heart. Peace and Love be with you, and your family.

Diana Sauceda
Diana Sauceda
Friend
July 8, 2020
Words cannot express how sad I am to hear of your loss. I extend my Deepest Sympathy to the Family. Blackjack you will be missed
Patsy Martinez
Friend
July 8, 2020
Paul and I send our condolences to Brenda and the family. We were schoolmates of both Mark and Brenda at TUHS. A long time ago but wanted to send our sympathies. Mark had a smile that could light up a room.
Paul and Doris (Bowen) Undiano
Classmate
July 8, 2020
I never got to meet Mark and so many of the rest of you but I am ever so thankful for our Facebook time. My heart just hurts for the sadness. I will always keep you all in my heart and in my prayers. Fly high with the angels, Mark!!!
Kathy Markham
Family
July 8, 2020
Our Sincere Condolence to Kristin, Brenda, The Entire Urquiza Families & Relatives. I (Pam) grew up with Mark in the Project Homes here in town. Such memories we all have living there! The big memory Our Families have is that Flagstaff Snow Trip that we all will never forget, and nor did Mark! Mark going down our snow board, breaking his ankle, Brenda running down the hill, hurting her ankle! Our Family sitting with Kristin at the emergency room waiting on results of the both. Crazy how fast life goes anymore! Our Hearts hurt to know a Pandemic took such a Wonderful Man away, and has many others. Prayers will continue for the safety of our loved ones. Love Dale & Pam Crandell & Family, Byrne Family also.
Bobby Dale Crandell
Friend
July 8, 2020
You are missed BlackJack....
cathy west
Friend
July 8, 2020
Our sincere condolences to the Urquiza familia from the Mora Familia. Peace be with you all.

Gilbert E. Mora Jr
Glendale, AZ
Gilbert E. Mora Jr.
Friend
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