Obituary of Mark Stephen Combs
Born August 3, 1960, in Greater St. Louis, Missouri to Robert Combs and Jacqulyn (Anderson) Bandiera, Mark passed away after a month-long battle with leukemia on January 24, 2024, in Denver, Colorado. He was 63 years old.
After growing up around the Midwest, Mark’s family settled in Omaha, Nebraska. His early life saw him being a kid: playing baseball and football, annoying his younger siblings Kathi and Keith, and generally getting into some sort of trouble. Jacque can recount the number of times she got a phone call to pick Mark up along with his friends on occasion!
Mark graduated from Millard High School in June 1978 and joined the Air Force as an Aircraft Maintenance Specialist.
Upon discharge from the Air Force, Mark decided he would try something different and became an over-the-road truck driver working for several different companies including Werner Enterprises and Monfort. He also took the independent route owning his own rig for a time. His travels took him from coast to coast. And those of you who knew him then and even recently, would understand his handles Comfortably Numb and Gravedigger. Stories told, he picked up the Gravedigger handle by following a state trooper (state unknown) at what one can only imagine an excessive rate of speed when another driver commented on how he was digging his own grave.
Mark loved to fish, his favorite spot located in Wyoming making the trip with the kids and friends. Of course, fishing at any spot made for a better day than being at work.
Later in life, he discovered cooking and baking, and man could he cook and bake. If you didn’t have the opportunity to taste his chili, well, you missed out! And then there are the cookies…he liked to say that adding an extra ¼ cup of flour made a better cookie.
Another of Mark’s interests was woodworking. Starting out with small projects, he made beautiful pieces for the family, completing cutting boards for each of the kids in the last couple of years.
And we can’t forget golf…the sport he loved to hate but played all the same. His last few rounds he especially enjoyed with the kids and his brother among others. One of Mark’s golf highlights was the opportunity to attend “The Peoples Open” at TPC Scottsdale a few times and hang out at the 16th hole.
Mark met his wife Shelly on a Greyhound Bus headed to Denver and they were married several months later in October 1987. It must have been around this time he became a Denver Broncos fan. Although he wasn’t sure about admitting to that the last few seasons.
Mark loved his kids and grandkids – sons Justin and Jacob and daughter Kaite. Following in their dad’s footsteps, Justin is now a father of, soon to be, three grandkids; Kaite became an OTR driver, now a fleet manager; and Jacob moved into transportation as a DSR. He played with the grandkids every opportunity he got!
Mark was a long-time aviation enthusiast flying in his dad’s Decathlon, hanging out at the Millard Airport, and traveling to airshows. He returned to aviation and graduated from Colorado Aero Tech in 1992. Mark’s aviation career spanned 24 years taking the family to multiple states including Wisconsin, Vermont, Oklahoma, Missouri, Idaho, California, and Arizona. And after having lived in Vermont, no day was cold to Mark. He would typically say, “It’s a beautiful Vermont summer day.”
Mark was preceded in death by his grandparents James and Elenor, and Vena; father Robert; stepfather Richard; and sister Kathi. He is survived by his wife Shelly; son Justin and wife Megan with grandkids Grayson, Maizie, and Cameron; daughter Kaite; son Jacob; friend and Justin’s mother Angela; mother Jacque; brother Keith and wife Tami, along with cousins, nieces, and extended family. He will be missed by not only family but numerous friends and former co-workers.
His ashes will be spread at his favorite fishing hole in Wyoming, date to be determined. Please contact Mark’s family at firstname.lastname@example.org for memorial information.