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About SETMA - Mark A. Wilson, M.D.
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Mark A. Wilson, MD
April 4, 1955 - March 23, 2009
In Memoriam

True character is never found in success or comfort; it is found only in adversity and disappointment. Dr. Mark Wilson's greatest achievement was not professional success, or community involvement; it was in the demonstration to us how one should face the words, "You have a terminal illness." None who knew and who loved Mark can ever hope to "do it as well as he," but all of "The Friends of Mark" shall always have his standard of excellence as our measure.

Mark was born April 4, 1955 and he passed away on March 23, 2009. He graduated from Hillcrest High School in Dallas, Texas, from Southern Methodist University with a BS in Biology and Chemistry, and in 1980, he received the Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, Texas. He completed a surgical internship at Ochsner's Medical Center in New Orleans, Louisiana. After practicing emergency medicine in several Louisiana communities, Mark became the Assistant Medical Director of the Emergency Department in Corsicana, Texas. In the fall of 1982, he moved to Beaumont, Texas.

If any evidence were needed to know that Mark would follow "the road less traveled," it could be found in his trips abroad in 1980 and 1982. Before beginning his medical career, he traveled to Europe, and on another trip, he visited Afghanistan, Katmandu, New Delhi and Bangkok. He traveled like a student and met hundreds of interesting people. All of the Southeast-Texas "Friends of Mark" should know that they have fellow-travelers in these far flung places. Mark's disarming charm and winsome personality endeared him to many from other cultures and other worlds. Only he would have chosen the itinerary described above.

Settled in Beaumont, Mark met and subsequently married Lanell Hussey, June 20, 1987. Their sons, Dylan McKenzie Wilson and Zachary Palmer Wilson were born here and joined their daughter, Misty Michelle Hussey, as the focus and passion of Mark's life. The only element of his illness which caused Mark great pain was leaving his children to whom he was totally devoted. In his office hangs a picture of a little boy standing by a lake. The caption reads, "One hundred years from now, it will not matter what my bank account was, how big my house was, or what kind of car I drove. But the world may be a little better, because I was important in the life of a child." In the lives of these three children, and in the lives of numerous other children, Mark A. Wilson shall forever be important. His memory and his life will be a joy and challenge to them all of their lives.

In time, as the pain of this loss diminishes, the residue of his love, of his laughter, of his person will continue to sustain them. Mark's children will give truth in their lives to the words of Alfred Lord Tennyson's poem, In Memoriam, in which he said:

    "I hold it true, whate'er befall;
    I feel it, when I sorrow most;
    'Tis better to have loved and lost
    Than never to have loved at all."

Dylan, Zach and Misty must know that nothing in life -- no experience, no achievement, no honor, no reward, no gain -- ever approached in estimate of value how Dr. Wilson loved, cherished and delighted in his children. They are and ever shall be his most lasting memorial. Each of them can say through their tears and pain, "If this is the price of having Mark Wilson as our father, it is a small thing. Indeed, it is better to have loved him and lost him than to never have loved him at all."

Professionally, Mark was driven by a passion for building and for excellence. Continuing his pilgrimage along the road less-traveled, and ahead of his time, he opened multiple walk-in clinics in Southeast Texas. In May, 1995, Mark met with three other physicians to discuss the formation of a group practice. When he returned home after their first meeting, Lanell asked him, "Do the others have any idea what they are getting into?" Mark responded, "They don't have a clue," and they didn't. Mark's energy and drive were keys to the success of what was to become Southeast Texas Medical Associates, LLP (SETMA).

Many said that he and his co-founding partner could not work together, but both discovered common principles and goals which forged them into a formidable team. Hours and hours of discussions after clinic hours began to crystallize a plan and a strategy. Mark's words could fill a volume on business. It was his vision that SETMA be a business which would last 100 years; his colleagues all desire to fulfill his vision. Mark said, "Excellence is not a stop sign you pull up to; it is a direction in which you are going." The "process of excellence" became the dynamic of every thing that is done at SETMA. Mark often commented that his best professional relationships in his life were his partners and colleagues at SETMA.

As a community member, Mark's greatest achievement was the formation with several others of Girl's Haven, a safe place for girls at risk. As he suffered through the first years of a new organization, SETMA, and as he fulfilled his financial responsibilities for his previous enterprises, he undertook, and with Lanell, gave most of their expendable income to Girl's Haven. Tirelessly and relentlessly, he drove himself to provide a place for these girls. Few will ever know the work he put into that effort; few will ever know how he worked through fatigue and exhaustion to sustain that effort.

Mark's last wish was that in lieu of flowers that gifts be given to Girl's Haven for the building fund for a gymnasium. Often at memorial services people estimate how greatly loved someone is by how many attended, or by how many flowers were present. Mark will estimate your love by how much money you give to Girl's Haven. A memorial plaque in Mark's honor will be placed at Girl's Haven. Inscribed upon that plaque will be the names of everyone who gives a gift for this cause in Mark's name.

One of Mark's dearest friends and most trusted colleague is Mrs. Norma Duncan, CFNP. Norma has worked with Dr. Wilson at SETMA for over ten years. Early in her tenure with SETMA, she began to experience something which became common place. People would come in and say, "I am a friend of Mark's." There were hundreds of them from all walks of life. It seemed and it was so, that Mark knew and was loved by everyone. When he announced his illness, Norma and others had shirts made with a big "FOM" on the front and on the back the words, "Friend of Mark." All over town and everywhere, people wore those shirts indicating their love and prayers for Mark Wilson. Everyone at SETMA and everyone that had the privilege shall always be grateful that they had the opportunity to be "a friend of Mark." To some, who suffer so greatly at his passing, Tennyson's words ring true, "it is better to have loved...."

Among the friends of Mark there was an inter-council, unofficial but always there; this core of friends formed the heart of Mark's life. Each should know how greatly he loved and valued you. Among these are Mike and Myla Ramsey, Robert Thomas, Brian Sutton, Brian and Rose Blount, Bob and Karen Wortham, Carl and Pat Griffith, Marty and Revlon Craig and Bobby and Susie James. There are many others who though unnamed, all know how much Mark cherished each of you.

Children most often follow their parents, but with Mark his parents followed him to Beaumont. His father, Mr. Eugene Davis Wilson, and his mother, Mrs. Lois Geraldine Wilson, along with Mark's brother Roger Dale Wilson and his wife Shandra, and their children, Leslie and Lauren, and Mark's brother, Gregory Lane Wilson, survive Mark and will be touch points for all who loved and miss Mark so terribly. The joy is that their grief will in time be replaced by their deep gratitude for whom their son, brother and uncle was. Each of them would testify to how much their lives were enriched by his. Mark loved his family.

After a long illness, Mark found eternal rest and peace in his very private but powerful faith in Christ. He will be missed for a lifetime by all who knew and loved him. His peace, joy, sweetness, kindness and spirit were his greatest gift to his family, friends and colleagues. His gift will be cherished always.

The family is grateful for the care and attention given to Mark and his family by all of the staff at Memorial Hermann Baptist Hospital, MediHome Care, the partners and staff of SETMA, and a host of friends.

In lieu of flowers, Dr. Wilson has asked that donations be given to Girl's Haven for the building fund for a new gymnasium.



SETMA I
2929 Calder
SETMA II
3570 College
Mark A. Wilson Clinic
2010 Dowlen
Nederland
2400 Highway 365
Orange
610 Strickland Drive
Lumberton
137 N LHS Drive

409-833-9797 888-833-0523

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