Mark V. Guenther, 69, of Gardiner, NY passed on Tuesday, April 11, 2023 at his home surrounded by loving family and friends after a five-year battle with FTD (frontotemporal degeneration: What is FTD?)
Mark was born on August 29, 1953 in Yonkers, NY to Mercedes (Parente) Guenther and Russell Guenther. He went to Lincoln High School in Yonkers. As a kid Mark fell in love with music. He kept hearing the bass line loud and clear and soon managed to procure his own bass. During his 14th summer, he spent every waking hour with his bass, teaching himself the riffs he’d need to know for a lifetime of playing in bands. Some of those bands were The Rent, Wizard, The Jimmy Coyle Band, and the locally popular Shep and the Coconuts. Even once he became too ill to play, he was never happier than when sitting with headphones watching the bassist Jack Bruce perform in Cream concerts.
Mark began to call the Hudson Valley home when he moved to New Paltz in 1973. He rented a house in Modena, and soon after buying it, started a 10-year total renovation.
Mark started out as a framer on a framing crew for residential homes. Within a few years, he progressed to fine carpentry and homebuilding. He became the site foreman for Alembic Building in 1983, and with that company, he built about 40 homes in Gardiner and New Paltz. From there Mark became a radiant heat expert and installed many radiant floor heating systems in the Hudson Valley including his own home built in 2017. For many years, Mark managed careers in both music and contracting.
Mark was also a bird watcher. He and his wife Laurie would pore over bird books while they gazed out the window of the beautiful home they built together on the Shawangunk River in Gardiner.
Mark was a quiet, gentle man who loved people without judgment or qualification. He knew how to love with his whole being, and those who received that attention felt loved and safe in his presence. Mark was devoted to animals and will be missed deeply by his dog, Honey.
Mark is survived by his wife, Laurie Willow of Gardiner, his two daughters, Sara Guenther and Jillian Steelberg (Guenther), Jillian’s wife, Tierney Steelberg, and his mother, Mercedes (Parente) Guenther. He is also survived by many other loving relatives and friends, including his stepson, Jason Stern, and his family.
There will be a private memorial gathering for family and close friends. Donations in Mark’s honor would be gratefully accepted by Musicares, which provides a safety net of critical health and welfare services to the music community. https://www.musicares.org/about