Mark-Anthony-MerrillMark Anthony Merrill, 51, died Feb. 24. He was from Longview and graduated from H. Grady High School where he enjoyed running track. Merrillk excelled in his professional field as a conflict analyst at Jenkins and Gilchrist Law Firm and at Strasburger & Price LLP.

Merrill accepted Christ early in his life. He had a presence that would just fill up a room, and he enjoyed exercising and traveling to different parts of the world. His favorite song was “His Eye Is on The Sparrow,” so if you ever hear this song, please think of him.

Merrill never let anything in life keep him from achieving what was important to him. He befriended many people during his life journey and many people loved him. His favorite quote was “Bend, but don’t break.” He ran his race and finished his course and the Lord called him home.

Merrill is preceded in death by both his parents, Billy Joe Merrill and Marva Louise Chester:, his sister Marion Edwards; his brother Kenneth Merrill; both maternal and paternal grandparents and great-grandparents.  He is survived by his partner, Kenneth Jackson; four brothers, Ricky Merrill and wife Linda, Billy Joe Merrill and wife Linda, Gerry Merrill and Perry Merrill; two sisters, Karen Pugh and Georgia Marie Spears and husband Melvin; two aunts, Patricia Smith and Laura Lee: one uncle, Ronald Butler; and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition March 4, 2016.