Mark Phillip Remm was devoted family man who loved life with abandonment. He was compassionate and generous, willing to give the shirt off his back. He was outgoing and charismatic, never meeting a stranger who didn’t soon become a friend. His laugh was infectious and his personality was inviting. He drew people to himself and to the Lord he served. In his daily life, Mark evidenced the mercy of God and forgave the gravest offenses. He used his talents to express his joy and to lead others to a deeper commitment toward what matters most in life: faith and family.
Mark was born October 12, 1963 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, the fourth child of Thomas and Verda Jane Remm (nee Rachal). The decade had begun with America’s military involvement abroad and continued the civil rights movement back home. The United States advanced in the space race and soon celebrated the first human to set foot on the moon.
The Remm family moved to Chicago for a time and then to West Frankfort, Illinois. Thomas was a sheet metal journeyman and Verda cared for their five children at home: daughter Patricia and sons Ron, Chuck, Mark and Steve. Mark was a caring and gentle soul, acting as “Momma’s Little Helper” around the house. He never got into trouble and was probably the most behaved of his siblings. Sometimes this quality worked to his disadvantage, especially when it came to household chores. When Pat received instructions from Mom for what needed to be done, she handed over the tasks to Mark but never the chore money.
From an early age, Mark showed imagination and creative ability that carried into adulthood. As a boy, he made a small business out of painting rocks to look like little animals and then selling his “pet rocks” for a bit of extra cash. He also learned to play the saxophone and used his superior talent in the West Frankfort Community High School band and at church. He loved to sing and play, and already in his youth, he was using his God-given gifts in worship leadership.
Faith was extremely important to Mark. He was 16 when he received the in-filling of God’s Spirit and, as an expression of inspiration and surrender, he spoke in tongues for two days. He was a passionate speaker, whose contagion for the faith helped lead over 100 people to follow Jesus. Mark swayed from God for a time but returned to serve the Lord in 1990 at the Apostolic Life Tabernacle in Waukesha, Wisconsin. Once again, he served as worship leader there and later at Christian Life Center in Germantown.
With his enthusiasm for life, it’s little wonder that Mark became a salesperson as a career. He first worked as an assistant manager at Walmart, sales at Steinhafels Furniture. Then he became a sales manager at Ashley Furniture Stores and helped to open many new stores. Later he work in sales for Palermo Pizza and then advanced to Small Business Sales for AT&T, where he worked to the present.
In November of 2002, Mark met the love of his life, Tamara “Tami” Sand. Tami had moved from Minnesota to Milwaukee in 2001 to work as an MRI technician at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin. It was Tami who took the initiative toward Mark when her manager handed over his phone number, saying, “I have a great guy for you to meet.” Tami called Mark to set up a date, and the two had a wonderful time. However, because of the holidays approaching and Mark’s busy work schedule, they kept leaving messages for each other but never managed to get together. Mark and Tami finally went on date number two in February of 2003! From then on, their love grew and became especially strong when Mark led Tami to a life of loving God. They were married at Boerner Botanical Gardens in Hales Corners, Wisconsin on May 20, 2006. At the same time, they shared their life and faith as members of Parkway Apostolic Church, serving together on the worship team and in Kids Parkway and in Threads ministry programs.
On May 21, 2007, Mark and Tami were blessed with the birth of their first son, Christian, and their son Gabriel on February 17, 2009. Mark’s boys meant the world to him, and his family was his lifeblood. Together they reflected the promises of God as articulated in Mark’s favorite Bible verse: “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope” (Jeremiah 29, verse 11).
As a father, Mark radiated pride in his sons and helped them become all they were created to be. He longed to pass on his love of music, both for the saxophone and the violin that he was determined to learn to play. He instilled in them the joy of family life and of giving to others. Most of all, Mark lived out his faith in front of his sons and created an environment that caused the boys to admit that their favorite place to be was with Dad and Mom at home.
Among the pleasures of home life was gardening, riding bike, roller blading and staying fit. Mark was a dance enthusiast (Salsa and Motown) and a fan of the Green Bay Packers, Milwaukee Brewers and St Louis Cardinals. If the family traveled from home, they usually headed to Minnesota to visit Tami’s family. In 2014 the family began what they hoped would become an annual tradition of camping. In October 2014, Mark made a trip to Gatlinburg, Tennessee for a family wedding.
Around the house, Mark took to being a handyman. He liked the independence of working for himself and not having to hire someone else to complete his projects. It also gave vent to his creative nature.
Throughout his life, Mark was a lively personality and always lit up a room with his presence. He made a lasting impact on the many lives he touched. Truly, he loved and was loved.
Mark died Sunday, September 6, 2015 after being struck by a motor vehicle while riding his bike. He will be sorely missed and dearly remembered as a loving and devoted husband, father, brother and friend.
Mark P. Remm, age 51 years. Beloved husband of Tamara Remm (nee Sand). Loving and cherished father of Christian and Gabriel. Loving son of Verda and the late Thomas Remm. Dear brother of Patricia (Buddy) Foster, Ron (Peggy) Remm, Charles (Carolyn) Remm, and Steve (Jan) Remm.
Dear son-in-law of Harold and Elaine Sand. Dear brother-in-law of Kim (Scott) Novak, Kevin Sand, Kelly (Sheila) Sand, Terry (Mary) Sand, Tim (Kari) Sand and Trever (Natalie) Sand
Further survived by other relatives and friends.
Visitation Thursday, September 10, 2015 at Parkway Apostolic Church 10940 S Nicholson Road Oak Creek, WI 53154 from 4:00 pm until time of the Funeral Service at 7:00 pm.
In lieu of flowers memorials to support Mark Remm’s Family may be directed to: https://www.youcaring.com/tami-remm-429470
Suminski LifeStory Funeral Homes
Niemann / Suminski (414) 744-5156