Mark was born at the Good Samaritan Hospital in Los Angeles, CA, on August 5th, 1952. The family moved to the New York City area soon after. Raised in Rye, NY, Mark attended Osborn Elementary School. He went on to attend The Governor’s Academy in Byfield, MA, with which he had a profound, life-long connection. He graduated in 1971.
After receiving a BA from Hamilton College in 1975, he attended the University of Missouri Graduate School of Journalism in Colombia, MO, graduating in 1977. He began his journalism career with The Kansas City Star where his team earned a Pulitzer Prize for its reporting on the Hyatt Regency Hotel overhead walkway collapse and where he often contributed to The New York Times as a regional correspondent. Mark lived in Kansas City from 1978 until 1987. Following a return to the New York City area, Mark held a variety of publishing positions at Fairchild Publications and Reed Elsevier. It was at the latter that he developed a keen interest in and traveled frequently to China.
Having been greatly impacted by past professors, Mark’s other career interest was in education. He received his Master’s Degree in Education from Manhattanville College in August 2010 and taught at several schools, including the Thornton Donovan School, until developing early onset Alzheimer’s.
During his life, Mark’s passions included playing trumpet, writing, fly-fishing, and sailing. He served at Larchmont Avenue Church and pursued his love of sailing at the Larchmont Yacht Club. Family trips aboard the Lazy Bones were some of his fondest memories. He loved his children dearly and took pride in supporting their education and extracurricular activities.
Mark is survived by his sister, Gail R. Fraser of Highlands Ranch, CO; his son, Nick Fraser and daughter-in-law, Tara Willinger Purasson of Montclair, NJ; and his daughter, Emily Fraser of Asheville, NC.
His family would like to thank those who cared for Mark in various ways toward the end of his life including; Pam and Arthur Washington, Homayoun “Homey” Tahvildari, Newtown Rehabilitation and Health Care Center in Newtown, CT, and his sister, Gail. If you would like to donate in Mark’s honor, he would love for you to support the Rye Nature Center in Rye, NY. A celebration of Mark’s life will be held this summer in New York.