Cover photo for Mark Daniel Owen's Obituary
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1952 Mark Daniel Owen 2024

Mark Daniel Owen

September 17, 1952 — May 19, 2024

Nashville, TN

Mark Owen passed away at Alive Hospice in Nashville on Sunday, May 19, 2024 after an extended battle with cancer. Mark was born in Flint, MI, on Sept. 17, 1952 to parents Donald and Louise Owen. He attended Spring Arbor College where he met his wife, Dr. Laura Norling. Mark earned a Master’s in Social Work at the University of Michigan and a Juris Doctorate from Washington University in Saint Louis. Mark practiced law in East Saint Louis, IL, before working for the city of Charlottesville, VA. The family moved to Wayland, MA, where Mark took time to focus on raising his son Matthew and caring for Laura during her final illness.


Mark then became an elementary school teacher, a role he would go on to hold for almost 20 years in Wayland Public Schools. He was known for teaching hands-on science projects and for organizing a “SOUPer Bowl” each February, with classes competing to donate the most food to a local food bank. Mark retired from teaching in 2019 and moved to Nashville to be near his son’s family. He was quickly pressed into teaching again, this time as support for his grandson during virtual school in the pandemic.


Mark was active in faith groups in every community in which he lived. Most recently he was a member at West End United Methodist Church, where he was a regular volunteer with a ministry for Nashville’s unhoused population. He lived his life placing other peoples’ needs ahead of his own. Mark will be remembered for his kindness, patience, and sly wit.


Mark is preceded in death by his parents, his wife, and his sister, Donna Henke. He is survived by his son Dr. Matthew (Dr. Amy) Owen and grandson Edward “Teddy” Owen, of Nashville. He is also survived by his brothers Gary (Judy) Owen, Phil (Ann) Owen, Kipp Owen (Graham Lockett), sister Margie (Steve) Robbins, and brother-in-law Jack Henke, all of Michigan; his wife’s mother Georgia Norling, brothers Bill (Elaine) Norling, Sam Norling, and Aaron Norling, and sisters Susan (Hugo) Anderson and Helen (Mark) Noel of Ohio; and many nieces and nephews.


The family will hold a celebration of life in Michigan at a date to be determined later. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to “The Quiet Place” ministry at West End United Methodist Church (Nashville, TN).

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