Gainesville- Marion L. Clarke, age 77, passed away on April 2, 2013, in North Florida Regional Medical Center, surrounded by his family.
He was born December 22, 1935, in Sioux City, Iowa. In 1958 he received his BA in Education at Morningside College (Sioux City, Iowa) and was a high school teacher, Coach and Principal. He then completed his Masters Degree from the University of South Dakota.
In 1970 Marion earned his Ph.D at Texas A&M University in Recreation and Resource Development. He was a Professor at Texas A&M University from 1970-1972.
From 1972-1976 he worked for the National Park Service in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia where he was the Director of the National Park Service Training Institute.
In 1976 he moved to the Navajo Indian Reservation in Window Rock, Arizona, to work for the National Park Service in helping the Bureau of Indian Affairs to better utilize their natural resources.
In 1977 Marion moved to Gainesville to work at the University of Florida, as the Director of Florida Sea Grant and as Professor and Assistant Dean for Marine and Coastal Programs.
Marion was an avid Gator fan and member of the Gator Tip-Off Club. He loved spending summers in his mountain home near Cullowhee, North Carolina and spending time with his 7 grandchildren.
He is survived by his wife of 55 years, Judith Clarke of Gainesville. His sister Doris Riley and mother-in-law both of Gainesville. His daughters Kim Feigum of Gainesville, Teri (Jim) Rooney of Knoxville, TN. His son Kevin (Karen) Clarke of Gainesville and his 7 grandchildren Drew, Jenny, Brooke, Brittany, Weston, Will, and Wyatt.
A celebration of Marion’s Life will be held on Saturday April 6, 2013, at 10am, at Forest Meadows Memorial Park Central (Mausoleum/Chapel in the Meadows) 4100 NW 39th Ave, Gainesville, FL 32606. There will be a reception immediately following at the Clarke residence. Flowers may be sent to Forest Meadows Funeral Home at 725 NW 23rd Ave, Gainesville, FL 32609.
I just heard the sad news of Marion’s passing and although I have not seen Marion in a number of years, the news hit and emotional chord and brought back numerous fond memories of your husband. I worked with Marion for many many years as part of the Assembly of Sea Grant Extension Leaders which Marion helped to establish. Marion was one of the greats in Sea Grant extension and you should know that from hose of us who knew him well, he was admired. My wife and I recently celebrated our 25th anniversary at Hawk’s Cay (where Marion organized two legendary Assembly meetings), and I could not help telling her Marion stories while we were there.
I wish you the best during this very difficult time and please know your that your husband made a major difference through his many contributions to the Sea Grant extension program.
Teri, Jim and family – Our deepest condolences for the loss of your loved one. This is such a difficult time and your faith will help you through. You are in our thoughts and prayers.
Teri, Jim, Brooke and Brittany-We are sad for your loss. Although we didn’t know him, we know he raised a beautiful lady that we are proud to call our friend. So he must have been just as wonderful! We pray for you during this time and send big hugs and lots of love.
Brien and Teri Owens
Judy and all of your family. So many fond memories of being with Marion and all of you in so many gatherings. My heart goes out to all of you in this difficult time of grieving. Wish I could be there to share this time with all of you but follow-up dr. appts and other commitments do not allow. My thoughts and prayers are with you and hope to see you soon. Love you all, Betty
I was shocked when I saw on Teri’s Facebook people extending condolences. I waited until it was verified as thought it must be a misunderstanding. After talking to you Friday night, I thought things were on the up swing. It really upset Pete and I. We have been praying for all of you. We have so many good memories of being with Marion and you during our early years and then later on as we all got together with our school group. May God hold you in the palm of his hand during this difficult time.
I had the pleasure of meeting and working with Marion last weekend at Shands rehab hospital. In the two days I worked with him, he was such a man of love for his family and a huge heart. I learned a lot about him. Our last session together on Saturday was standing outside in the sunshine, it was great! I came back to work today excited to see him, and learned about his passing.
I’m so sorry for everyone’s loss, may God comfort you and fill your heart with all the wonderful memories of a great dad and grandfather
OT , Shands rehab Hosptial
We think so much you all always. We know this is a difficult time so our thoughts and prayers go out to you and your family this weekend. We can see so many reasons for you to be proud of your father and to celebrate his life.
Scott, Buffy, Foster, and Auburn