Mark Mirbaba, a mighty warrior who fought bipolar disorder since 2003, lost the battle on Tuesday, April 25, 2023. Mark was born in Oklahoma City, OK, lived 5 years in Tehran, Iran, Green Bay, WI and the last 24 years in Leonia, NJ. Mark loved all sports, and his favorite teams were the Yankees, Rutgers and the Green Bay Packers. On any given day, you would find Mark at the gym, working out, training, or in the summer the Jersey Shore. His career in the Hospitality Industry, he worked in New York City and New Jersey, and simultaneously worked alongside his father helping him to build his rug and restoration business. He and his father traveled the Middle East, Africa and Europe and created many fond memories and met a lot of wonderful people along the way. Mark was a fun-loving, big-hearted, who adored his niece above all, and taught her all about sports. A loyal friend who possessed a unique compassion for those less fortunate, who suffered or were challenged, that stemmed from his own experience of emotional pain. Whatever he owned in his life, it was always given away.... and even at his parting, he had in place his donation of his whole body to Rutgers University.
Mark's final years were difficult ones, both for him and those who loved him. The last 9 months he suffered the deepest depression, worked closely with his physician's, in and out of hospitals, but nothing worked out for him. Mark studied Sport Management at Rutgers University; he was shy 14 credits to receive his BA. This past January he worked with a counselor at Rutgers and was planning to return to Rutgers to complete his credits and then continue in our nation's "First Apprenticeship for a Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor" fighting the Opioid Epidemic in New Jersey.
So often people who have a mental illness are known as their illness. People say that “he is bipolar” or “he is schizophrenic.” Over the coming days as you talk to people about this, please do not use that phrase. People who have cancer are not cancer, those with diabetes are not diabetes. Mark was not bipolar – he had an illness called bipolar disorder – Mark himself was a kind soul, beautiful child of God. The way we talk about people and their illnesses affects the people themselves and how we treat the illness. In the case of mental illness there is so much fear, ignorance and hurtful attitudes that the people who suffer from mental illness needlessly suffer further. Our society does not provide the resources that are needed to adequately understand and treat mental illness. Someday a cure will be found, but until then, we need to support and be compassionate to those with mental illness, every bit as much as we support those who suffer from cancer, heart disease or any other illness.
Mark will be forever missed by his loving parents, Masoud and Kate, his sister Mariam June and Jamie, sister Martamena and Phil, his niece Nyla-Rose, Zuri, Kiwi, and Pebbles all in New Jersey, and the many extended family members in California, Colorado, Iran, Texas and Wisconsin. He now is home with his babies Mashti + Maggie, his German Shepherds.
" I LOVE YA TA THE MOON AND BACK" Mark had such a love for family, we thank God for sharing him with us these past 41 years, we learned the true meaning of love.
July 22. 1981 - April 25,2023
A Mighty Warrior
Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life...
I Timothy 6:12