Mark James Alexander, Sr. Age 93, of
Campbell. Mark was born in Lawrence, Kansas January 23, 1911 amid a
violet thunder storm. His parents were intelligent and gifted people who
encouraged their children and created a strong family loyalty. Mark
spent his boyhood hunting the unfenced fields and woodlands of rural
Kansas with his three brothers. They all were expected to get good
grades in school and usually complied. Mark was working on his masters
degree in Fine Arts at the University of Kansas in 1940 when he felt the
war was eminent and decided to enlist as a private. At Fort Benning, Ga.
1st Lt. Mark Alexander met 2nd Lt. Mary Collins, a nurse, and romance
bloomed. They were married in March 1942. Mark volunteered for
paratroopers and fought in Sicily and Italy as a Major in command of the
2nd Battalion, 505 Parachute Infantry Regiment, 82nd Airborne Division.
He saw extensive combat in Sicily and Italy and was promoted to Lt. Col.
before the D-Day jump into Normandy France. He received the following
commendations: Silver Star, British Distinguished Service Order (DSO),
the French Croix de Guerre with Palm, Bronze Star, and a Purple Heart.
He was severely wounded in Normandy. Mark is survived by his wife Mary,
his three children, Mary Jo Sparry, Mark James Alexander, Jr., and Don
Philip Alexander. He is grandfather to John Sparry, Michael Sparry,
Michael Mayes, Krissie Brown, David Alexander, Jeni Smith, Leigh
Alexander and Nicholas Alexander and the great grandfather to Steele
Smith, Faith Brown, and Daniella Sparry. Mark was a Real Estate Broker.
He moved to this area in 1947. He enjoyed the outdoors. He was an avid
fly fisherman and painter of landscapes. Mark was a man of principle, a
success in all his endeavors. He was battle hardened but taught by
example, love and giving. Even in his last days, he was giving comfort
to others. Mark believed in God and looked forward to being reunited
with loved ones who had already passed on. He will be greatly missed.
Funeral service May 26, 2004, 1:00 p.m. at Oak Hill's Chapel of the
Oaks. Burial private at Oak Hill Memorial Park. Arrangements by OAK HILL
(San Jose Mercury News, San
Jose, CA, 23 May 2004 courtesy of Tedd Cocker)