Half the Fun in Life

“Half the fun in life is teasing you!”

If I had a quarter for every time I heard that phrase in the years between 1992 and 2016, I would probably be rich by now. Anyone who knew Mark Tracy knows exactly what I mean. Looking back, being teased for those 24 years is one of my fondest memories. Today is the fourth anniversary of his passing, so it’s time for a bit of review and reflection.

If you, like Foster and Panda, “only know him from pictures”, the photos you’ll see here may help you to “grasp” more fully the person he was. For the rest of us, well, let’s just enjoy the memories and think about how much fun there really is in life.

In addition to his numerous hats, (for more see “Papa’s Hats”) there was also the famous blue shirt. It seemed like 9 times out of 10, when he wasn’t dressed up for church, you would see Mark in a blue shirt.

Speaking of being dressed up for church, being head usher for our church’s annual West Coast Conference at the convention center was a job he truly loved. Even when filled with all those people, it still feels empty to me without him.

Another thing Mark loved was being a part of our church’s many dramatic presentations. Perhaps his most memorable “role” was that of  “The Centurion” in an Easter drama of the same name. After three separate years of his being in this play, I can tell you that I still know a lot of his lines. (“Messiah? Did you say Messiah?”)

Not all  his theatrical roles were part of epic productions. A lot of what we did was for Sunday school. Here you see a random Bible character, the angel Gabriel, shopkeeper Señor Pedro, Ranger Rightheart, a lowly taxpayer, and Trusty Sam.

There are some little things we can’t forget, like the famous lanyard!

And what about “The Robe”?

Even the tough times provided us with opportunities to bond with family and friends.

And many of us can still hear those immortal words: “Hey, hey, hey!”March 11I won’t lie and say it hasn’t been the loneliest feeling, being without my best friend for the past four years. I did this drawing prior to the third anniversary, and you’ll notice I had pointed out to myself that we would be starting Year 4. So I guess this means we are starting Year 5.Milne portrait

“I sure miss you, but Heaven’s sweeter with you there.”

(From “I Sure Miss You” by Jason Crabb)

26 thoughts on “Half the Fun in Life

    1. Aww, thanks so much! It’s always hard to write these posts because I never want to come off as depressing. But to be honest, Mark and the word “depressing” don’t even belong in the same sentence 🥰

      1. It wasn’t depressing at all. It was very precious. It’s just that I can imagine how difficult it is lose your spouse and best friend. And yet, many of us will go though it, and have to keep on living, carving out a new life for ourselves while retaining memories of the old one. Thank you for sharing. 🙂

  1. christinaclaborn

    Well, I’ve had my cry for the day. 😢. I truly miss him every day. He was the best daddy ever. ❤️

  2. Sharon Killian

    A wonderful tribute, and I love you can truly say he was your best friend. I don’t hear that very often and it touches my heart because you both had that sparkle very few have been blessed to share, love you Debbie. Sharon Killian 😘

    1. Andy Carrasco

      Reading this brings back so many memories of my youth on Sunday mornings. He always called me with that high pitch southern voice and playfully sock my shoulder. The mark-o bucks were awesome, meeting cristy and becoming family; you and him allowed me to be me and showed me what true love really meant. I sure do miss his voice and his smile.

      1. Thanks, Andy! It means so much to me that you would comment on my post! I’m glad we could be a part of each other’s lives! I still remember you being the lion in a skit at Belmont when you were in something like the 4th grade! God bless!

  3. This such a lovely post! Of course, I never met Mark, but his character and humour really come through in your photographs. He must have been such a special man. Hang onto the happy memories and bask in the warmth of his love shining on you from the other side.

    1. Thank you so much Chris! I’m glad I was able to convey Mark’s personality through the pictures. It’s always helpful to me to be able to post a tribute each year but I think this is my favorite one so far.

  4. Wonderful memories. He’s every watching over you and close beside you. I lost my soul mate in August 17 2017. I also know what time he passed and as the years go my third coming up I miss him more and more. I haven’t done it yet but I want to draw a nice little poster saying it was then that the angels took you but you are ever with me and waiting on the other side. Many blessings to you.

    1. Thank you! “Soul mate” is the perfect way to describe it, too. My heart goes out to you as you near your 3rd year without your dear soul mate. It’s true that the years don’t make you miss them any less. But I think the memories do become more precious! Sending love!💖

  5. Anonymous

    What a beautiful tribute. I’m so sorry your best friend, your love, your soulmate is no longer here with you. But he left you with lots of wisdom, strength, love and time to give. I love you Sis Tracy!!!!!!! Thank you for sharing

  6. I love seeing the photos of Mark. He was exactly like he is in his photos. He always had a good word or something funny to share. He had a smile on his face and brightened your day just by talking with him. Your tribute brought tears to my eyes, but also made me smile just remembering him.

    1. Andy Carrasco

      Reading this makes me feel honored to have known and grew up with you and him. I can always hear him call out my name in a high southern pitch voice while playfully socking my shoulder. It was my privilege to have his as my sunday school leader when i was younger….i sure do miss his voice

      1. Thank you so much Andy! I miss his voice too! I’m so glad you were part of our Sunday school! Mark would be so happy to know you have fond memories of those days! 💖

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