Mark Gandolfi

Obituary of Mark Steven Gandolfi

With heavy hearts we announce the unexpected passing of Santa Cruz local, Mark Steven Gandolfi who was only 68 years old. Mark was born on April 2nd, 1955, in Las Vegas, Nevada. Before he was a year old, his parents, Al and Daisy Gandolfi moved their new family back to Santa Cruz where Mark lived most of his life as an artist, stone mason, carpenter and architectural designer. Mark, along with his brother Kirk, came up in the construction trade under the mentorship of their father. Mark evolved into a first-rate carpenter, and an incredible stone and brick mason. Mark studied architectural design, developing a keen sense for drafting and illustrating any type of structure with precision and finesse. However, underneath Mark’s building and design skills was a natural ability to draw, illustrate, paint and sculpt. There is proof of this in his childhood drawings of Bugs Bunny, Fred Flintstone and just about any Marvel Comics character. By the time Mark was in his early teens, he wrote and illustrated comic strips for his school newspaper and other local publications. Those who knew Mark understood his quick wit, sharp tongue and aggressive approach to any project he tackled. Mark Gandolfi was the kind of person you would want as backup in any situation whether it was work, play, adventure or a tight spot. Although taken from us far too soon, his work, his legacy, and his influence are forever rooted here in his hometown of Santa Cruz and shall continue to grow through the lives of his entire family, friends and colleagues. Mark adored and was entirely devoted to his family. His biggest reward in life after the birth of his daughter, Jessica, was becoming a Nono (grandfather). He treasured his visits to Florida where he would spend his time tickling, going to the pool or beach and talking Marvel Comics for hours with his grandbabies. As rough and tough as he was, he had the biggest heart. His love was completely genuine and if you had it, you felt it. That is truly what we will miss the most. Mark is survived by his mother, Daisy Rose Gandolfi; his daughter, Jessica Rose Marra, her devoted husband Jordan Marra and their two beautiful children Sofia Rose and Luca Lewis Marra; his younger brother Kirk Marvin Gandolfi and wife Dawn Gandolfi, and their son Kirk Giovanni Gandolfi; Kirk’s children Camille Marie Gandolfi, her son Austin Taylor Workman and grandson Michael Diaz Workman, Nichelle Francesca Gandolfi and her two daughters Aurora Teal and Aria Telan Greenlee, Nicole Celina Toupin and her two sons Marik Perseus and Jasper James Toupin, Caitlin Larissa Gandolfi and her daughter Rylee Paige Kostakis; Mark’s youngest brother Erik John Gandolfi; and his cousins Ron and Jean Gandolfi and their two sons Joe and Gino, Kristy Watson, Pam Gandolfi, Mike Gandolfi and Rick Gandolfi, and his high school sweetheart, Loryn Long. We love you, Mark. And we will miss you in heart, mind and soul. A celebration of life service will be held at the Mid County Senior Center, 829 Bay Avenue, Capitola CA 95010, on August 12, 2023, at 2pm. Friends of Mark can RSVP at

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A Memorial Tree was planted for Mark
We are deeply sorry for your loss ~ the staff at Benito & Azzaro Pacific Gardens Chapel
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