Mark Steven Hughes, 54, of Selma left this earth, the beauty of his home, surrounding nature, his beloved trees, and the love of many family and friends to walk with Jesus on Thursday, Feb. 12, 2015, following a 4 year battle with kidney cancer.
Mark was born Oct. 17, 1960 in Keosauqua to Karen (Lambert) Hughes and Arden Hughes. Mark lived nearly all of his life in the Selma area, graduating from Cardinal High School in 1979 and Indian Hills Community College in 1981. Mark enjoyed a 22 year career at Cargill in Eddyville. He also spent time at Winger in Ottumwa and Roquette in Keokuk. Most recently Mark had the opportunity to embark on the job of his dreams as Maintenance Manager during the construction and start-up of HF Chloralkali, LLC in Eddyville. Mark thrived in this role and truly loved the job, the challenges, and the camaraderie of his co-workers.
Mark was always a man of faith. He is a member of the Selma United Methodist Church and also attended Lake Road Church of Christ in Ottumwa, Iowa. Mark’s spirituality blossomed following surgery to treat kidney cancer in September 2011. This is when God introduced an angel, Mary into Mark’s life’s path. This led to one of Mark’s happiest moments, “a secret” elopement being crashed by brother Todd and Todd’s wife Tracy, who were promptly promoted to Best Man and Matron of Honor. The blessed union of Mark and Mary began a journey filled with faith, discovery, joy and love. As a team they worked together to battle Mark’s disease. Above that, they deeply loved and nurtured each other. Mark and Mary’s love was evident to all and an inspiration to everyone they encountered.
Mark’s proudest moments revolved around his family. He beamed with pride at the birth of his healthy baby girl, Ashton in 1989. In 2013 he wept with joy watching his son Mason graduate from Marine Boot Camp in San Diego, CA. Mark’s fatherly love grew deeper with the birth of Ashton’s daughter, Riley in 2008. He was also blessed to be welcomed with love into Mary’s circle of family and faith. Mark continually expressed how fortunate he was to have two wonderful families.
All of Mark’s life, he was a good natured prankster. His sense of humor, positive attitude and ability to put others at ease; combined with his passionate heart and sincere caring for others made it difficult for anyone not to love Mark. Even in times of darkness and pain, his positivity and humor persisted. He connected with many of his care-givers during his illness, quickly becoming their favorite patient.
Mark had a love for life, family and many friends, but most of all; Mark had a love for Jesus. Even in the most difficult of times he continually thanked and praised the lord. Mark’s deepest desire was that his life and the example he set forth would guide the way for his children and others to know God’s love. Mark believed that if even one more soul could be led to Jesus and the Kingdom of Heaven all the pain and suffering he endured through-out his life would have been worth it.
Those left to honor his memory include his wife, Mary; daughter Ashton Hughes; son Mason Hughes; granddaughter, Riley Townsend; stepson, Kurtis Gee; stepdaughter, Kayle Gee; grandmother, Helen Lambert; parents Arden and Karen Hughes; brothers Scot (Marcia) Hughes and Todd (Tracy) Hughes; nephews, Trevor Hughes and Spencer Hughes; and niece Katie (Luke) Roling.
He was preceded in death by his grandparents, Garold and Frances Hughes and Paul Lambert.
Funeral services will be at 10:30 A.M. Tuesday February 17, 2015 at Living Hope Bible Church, Eldon with Pastors Mark Young, Dave Albert and Bobby Carnahan officiating. Visitation will open at 11:00 A.M. Monday at Pedrick Funeral Home, Douds with family present from 5-7 P.M. Burial will be in Iowaville Cemetery, west of Selma. Mark requested that memorials be given for the education of his granddaughter; Riley may be left at the funeral home, church or mailed to the family at 33131 145th Street, Selma, IA 52588.