1954 - 2013 At Christmastime we lost Mark Lee Anderson, a friend and colleague, brother, son and uncle. He died unexpectedly at his home in Pasadena, California, attended by his kitty, Joey. He was 59. Words can definitely express our sadness and loss; it's the least we can do. Mark was an unparalleled wordsmith who naturally constructed the flawless spoken and written paragraph, and expected others to do the same. He had a restless mind and relentless curiosity. He deplored glib and simple answers when passionate debate was in order. His fine mind was ever tuned to the absurd, and when we remember him, we remember laughter--most often, hysterical laughter. Mark took immense pride in the accomplishments of his nieces and nephews. Each one was exceedingly special, and we all knew it. He enjoyed salmon fishing in Alaska with his cousins at every opportunity; he collected rare books and traveled widely. He attended Wheaton College. He cherished his friends and loved his job. Director of Environmental/Health and Safety for Tribune Publishing and Broadcasting at the time of his death, he began his career on the press room floor in 1985 at the Chicago Tribune. He rapidly advanced in an industry in the throes of historic change. He took positions at the New York Daily News, the Orlando Sentinel and the Los Angeles Times before settling into his most recent position with Tribune Publishing. As Mark traveled Alaska , one of his most intense areas of interest was in the interaction of geologic processes with man's temporal occupancy. He bought a book about the landforms along the Denali Highway and rented a car and drove the whole dirt road just to see/experience the complexity of the mountains/glaciers/rivers/eskers along the way. As he sat around the campfires or watched the fishing poles on the boat waiting for a bite, he would often look at the surrounding landforms and wilderness and ponder man's impacts on them, to include industrialization, global warming (or not), what does change mean, etc. Mark was born in Oak Park, Illinois and raised in the Evangelical Free Church. It was in Sunday School that he honed his skills as a raconteur and comedian. From the earliest age, his interests varied widely. He appreciated the arts and science, and had an abiding love of all things outdoors. Predeceased by his father Warren Anderson, he is survived by brothers Gregg Anderson of West Chicago, Illinois, Kurt Anderson of Belton, Missouri, and their wives. He also leaves behind his mother, Marian Anderson, of Lombard, Illinois, his beloved nieces and nephews, numerous cousins, and many grieving friends. In lieu of flowers, contributions could be made in memory of Mark Anderson to the University of Alaska at www.uaf.edu/giving/gift/giving-form,
with designation to the Alaska Quaternary Center.
Published by Los Angeles Times on Jan. 12, 2014.