As we collectively mourn the loss of one of our incredible community members, we are reminded of how precious life is. Lisa Marks was a bright light, a devoted sister, an activist, in love with the earth and the ocean, dedicated to mindfulness and wellbeing, and one who gave generously to dozens of causes around the world and at home in Orange County. Lisa died last Sunday at her home, in her sleep having been diagnosed with brain cancer only two months prior. With her passing, we are reminded to appreciate the gift of life, as we never truly know what the next day may bring.
When I first met Lisa in 2004, she was introduced to me as the “worm composter” of South Laguna. She volunteered to care for the worm bin and brought dark, rich soil to the community garden. At that time, I was leading classes for children at the garden and our mutual care for the earth brought us together to become good friends.
Lisa was a supporter of Earthroots from the very beginning. A few years after meeting, we were sitting around Lisa’s kitchen table with a couple of friends envisioning the direction for Earthroots Field School. With the support of those friends, we became a non-profit organization and Lisa was the founding President on Earthroots Board of Directors. Lisa embodied the role fully and was a critical leader in the growth of the organization and the purchase of Big Oak Canyon. She volunteered regularly in classes and loved camping under the stars at Big Oak. Lisa was moved by our dedication to fostering continued nature connection opportunities for children, teens, and adults, and pushed us as an organization to thoughtfully and strategically transform our expansive vision into reality. There are countless individuals and families who have benefited from her contributions to Earthroots over the years. We are forever grateful.
Lisa was a talented musician, a kind and gentle spirit, she inspired everyone with her dance moves, always said “YES!” when invited on a backcountry camping trip, was a math professor, had a unique way of connecting from her heart, and on top of it all, took great pride in lovingly caring for her sister Jill.
Lisa brought joy to so many. Her bright light will continue to shine in the hearts and smiles of her community. We will look upon her as an ancestor now and ask for her guidance from the stars.
With Love and Gratitude to a remarkable soul, and to the incredible gift of life.