Stories About Mark Bray

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From: Milan Popovich

Mark leaving us early

It never ceases to amaze me how true it is that the good die young! We’ve all been
robbed by Mark’s departure, especially Angie and his boys. My heart-felt
condolences to all.

I had the privilege of working with Mark on an off for almost 20 years. We delved
into software development together (or more aptly Mark and his team doing the work
after hearing the ideas that I had come up with), and always true to his word things
got done, when they were promised, and they worked as expected. Hard to ask for
more in any business relationship.

Laura and I had the opportunity to introduce the Boston City Boy to our farm in
Clarkston, and Mark’s reaction to our “herd” of donkeys and our mule was priceless!
Mark could appreciate the uniqueness of the life that we’ve tried to build for
ourselves, as he always took a similar path in his own decisions.

I’ll miss the proverbial Boston “speech impediment” as I called it. The Boy just
couldn’t seem to shake his roots, no matter how long he lived away from the east
coast. I regret that I didn’t get together with Mark and Angie in during any of
their stays in Naples, and I truly appreciated seeing the picture of Mark holding
court from the table on the patio, overlooking the ocean.

We can’t bring him back but we can keep him alive in our hearts, and I for one
intend to do just that. Good friends are forever and so are my memories of the
wonderful times I had the pleasure of spending with Mark.

From: Stephanie Rose

Mark was one of the coolest dudes I ever met; always collective and calm. Had his
finger on every pulse with a positive spin on most subjects; it was easy to imagine
Mark being the forth person in the movie Easy Rider along side Jack, Peter and
Dennis.

We partnered together on some internet projects and working with Mark I knew I/we
would have the deal; Mark was always professional and smooth; the Don Draper (Mad
Man) of the design of internet and probably any venture he touched. I always found
it a pleasure to be in his and Angie’s company.

​From: Nina Ditta Moore

Finding the right words can be so difficult to come by at a time like this. Having known Mark for 30 plus years, I truly wanted to speak at the memorial, but I knew that the words just wouldn’t come out of my mouth. Mark was always there for me through life’s ups and downs. He was like a Brother to me, and could be counted upon to offer honest and straightforward advice. He once told me “It’s how you ride the downs that matter most in life; the ups are just easy. Life will continue to have ups and downs. You just keep going, no matter what life throws your way.” Over the span of my career, each of my jobs presented several different challenges. I could always count on Mark; he would always offer advice from his unorthodox life experience and unique world view. I miss him and will never forget his strength & commitment to those he held closest; those in his inner circle which he was fearlessly protective. I miss his booming voice with that accent and his roaring laughter.

Mark was a very handy guy…well ok, no… He was not exactly handy : / BUT he always gave every project his best effort and got the job done. I admired his tenacity. Whether it was fixing leaky gutters, building sub floors, wallpapering, painting, fixing cars…. LOL….. Well at least he always knew the phone number of “the guy” who could get the job done :)

Mark was as generous as he was personable. Every Christmas he & Angie would silently sponsor needy families, ones who had an especially tough year. They would stealthily learn the ages & needs of the family and send Christmas gifts, always anonymously, always including the “hot” Christmas toy of the year. Sorry Mark…. I couldn’t resist sharing this secret with everyone.

What was no secret to anyone was that Mark loved his sons; they were very important to him and brought him much joy. He loved being Mr. Mom & able to chaperone field trips and coach the sports teams. It was very important to him that he get to be there for them. He had lost his father at such a young age. He lived through some tough times, but he was/is an example of a true survivor.

My wish for all family and friends who miss Mark Bray; immense strength during this difficult down in life and remember “It’s how you ride the downs that matter most in life, the ups are just easy. You just keep going, no matter what life throws your way”.

​From: Ken Cannon

Wow! What a wallop! I didn’t even know that he was ill.

My father’s favorite nephew and one of my favorite guys! He was such a character. He always had something both relevant and hilarious to say! Sterling Heights became a regular stop on my many crossings of the continent and even Heidi (my sheltie dog) was always welcome. My father had good taste and always remarked about Mark’s innate intelligence: “Now there’s a guy whose got it figured out!!”, my father used to say. And Mark did.

He had a peculiar twist on reality that usually involved some interpretation of the law that was his own but always perfectly acceptable. He skirted it but was always to be found directly across from those who wrote the foolish law (rarely with altruistic motives) with their own prospects in mind. Like a cat that teases his prey, he smiled and they could never touch him. His genius was well beyond his years and his persona was such that you knew experience to be his teacher. He looked you right in the eye, spoke his amazing mind, and never pulled a punch.

About a year ago, he called me to become involved with him in a project that had quite a pay off but not of the kind I was looking for just then.

What was interesting was that I was under contract at Harvard University to complete a study on the other side of the issue to prevent someone from potentially doing what Mark had specifically in mind! His approach was brilliant and despite my explanation as to why I couldn’t become involved (my solution to his query would contain a signature that was not only traceable but treasonable…) I always hoped he would pull it off. I left him with a clue to develop but he apparently never did as the system was never breeched. His last words to me were:

“You lead a charmed life”.

Kenny
We will all  miss him…

​From: Jay Ditta

Many people come in and out of our lives, but only a few make a difference and leave an impression that lasts forever. Very few are as special as Mark was. His kindness and thoughtfulness will always live in my heart and be remembered always.

We will all miss Mark immeasurably, however we can honor him by keeping him alive in our thoughts and deeds. I sincerely would like to thank Mark for always sharing his unique gifts that he brought to me and my entire family.