Mark David Harrison, 57, husband, brother, uncle, and friend, passed away on April 1, 2017. He was born to Louie Vardaman Harrison, Jr. and Mary Ann (Pegues) Harrison in Winona, Mississippi on October 12, 1959. Mark grew up in Winona and graduated from Winona High School, where he played both offensive and defensive positions on the football team. As a young boy he played baseball which continued through Junior High, High School and Holmes Junior College in Goodman, Mississippi. He went on to attend the University of Mississippi where he graduated with degrees in business administration (1983) and electrical engineering (1985). Mark also attended classes at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA).
Mark started the publication of the Ole Miss Engineer and was recognized for accomplishments within the Ole Miss Department of Engineering. His expertise in the field of Electromagnetic Propagation Theory within Zinc Compounds led him to achieve his first of many positions at Nichols Research in 1985 in Huntsville, AL and positions at Coleman Research in Huntsville, AL. Mark was the seeker Subject Matter Expert (SME) for the Theater High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system which continues today to be a system within our nation’s defense for the Missile Defense Agency (MDA). Mark contributed to efforts within Missile Defense which included engineering expertise support within the Space and Missile Defense Command (SMDC), various Program Executive Offices (PEOs), and throughout the Department of Defense (DoD).
Mark extended his further career knowledge by joining Miltec Corporation and while contributing to many Programs and Proposals, helped to lead a team to form and support the Advanced Hypersonic Weapon (AHW) Program. Within the last decade he was employed by two companies, including one in 2009 which was started in collaboration with a group of colleagues; Harrison Research Corporation (HRC), a System Engineering company, and Over-the-Garage Operations (OTG/OPS, Inc.), a Software Security company to support Enterprise technology advanced security and operations/maintenance. He also supported and was a member of many Defense and Commercial organizations within the Huntsville, AL area such as IEEE, NDIA, and ISSA.
Mark enjoyed many activities outside of work including playing golf, shooting APA pool league, and he enjoyed composing and playing music.
He is survived by his wife, Elizabeth Anne (Cooley) Harrison; his sisters and brothers, Pam Hoover and her husband, Steve, of MS; Kitty Stallings and her husband, Neil, of CA; Dr. Louie Vardaman Harrison, III and his wife Sonya of MS; and Lee Harrison and his wife Patty of TX. Mark was preceded in death by his parents, Louie Vardaman Harrison, Jr. and Mary Ann (Pegues) Harrison. He is also survived by many nieces and nephews.
Mark had many friends and colleagues who will always remember him for his passion for his work and compassion in life; his love of animals, his intellect, his ability to tell a great joke and his dedication to the Ole Miss Rebels.
The family extends thanks to the dedicated medical staff at Crestwood Medical Intensive Care Unit (MICU) in Huntsville, AL and to Mark’s personal physicians. Mark was memorialized Monday, April 3, 2017 with a visitation at Laughlin Service Funeral Home, Huntsville, AL. In Mark’s honor and remembering his love for animals, donations can be made to A New Leash on Life at www.anewleash.org or Tender Loving Care (TLC) at TLCPaws.org.