On Wednesday I lost a true mentor and friend.
At Uni, my flatmates and I used to have a theory that when you see people every day, and are ‘on top of each other’, it’s inevitable you’ll forge a close, almost family-like bond.
I sat back-to-back with Mark at Wolfstar.
I looked up to him. His altruistic nature and professional and personal astuteness were a privilege to experience. The day I started Wolfstar, Mark took me under his wing and made a visible effort to involve me in as much top-level PR activity (more often-than-not activity you wouldn’t expect of someone junior) as possible. This continued throughout the time we spent together and I learnt and felt so much support from Mark; both directly and indirectly. For this I will forever be grateful.
I honestly hold Mark responsible for giving me tools that make me as confident a PR practitioner as I feel today, and for inspiring me to keep working hard to achieve success.
Mark was genuinely caring and thoughtful- I had food poisoning on Monday night, and the last email I got from him was this on Tuesday:
Hey, hope you’re ok
Last night sounds nasty
Sent from Blackberry Orange®
It was the little things like this, that made him so approachable and trustworthy.
I’ve been trying to ask why? But the question, on many levels, is really how? How did Mark hide this illness, yet maintain flawless professional competency and maintain a selfless concern for people’s welfare, and strive for others to be at their constant best? I think that’s testament to both his professional genius and remarkable personal strength.
My former colleague and mate Amy use to call me ‘mini-Mark’. I don’t think there’s any bigger compliment, and it’s something I tried to live up to and always will.
I’m sorry I wasn’t there to see you one last time at the meeting. You probably would of grilled me for missing something out of the notes anyway ;)
I should have ALOT of ‘stories’ next time we see each other, so until then RIP mate.