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06/09/2022Mark McConville
Mark Robert McConville, age 94 of Centerville, passed away Thursday, June 9, 2022, at MercyOne Medical Center in Centerville.

Mark is finally with his family in heaven having a very LARGE party. Mark was the youngest of 13 children born to Edith and Edward McConville, in Centerville, Iowa. As you can imagine having no children of his own, he was like a second father to his many nieces and nephews…. I write this as one of those nieces, Sheila.…but also somewhat as his beloved daughter….

He spent his early years in Iowa doing the typical young schoolboy things. My dad (12th in birth order) and he was Irish twins, so they were always together. When Mark was born on May 1, 1938, his sister Ann gave birth to a daughter. He was her uncle, yet they were only months apart in age. Can you imagine all the friends he had just in his family alone?

He had the opportunity to go to high school in California for one year at Bellarmine College Preparatory, which began a long and eternal love for the Golden State. Mark entered the Society of Jesus in 1945 and was a practicing Jesuit for nearly 30 years. During this time, he was able to travel all over the country and nurture relationships with his siblings and their children. I believe it was because of this that our cousins are so close now. It was he who brought us together.

Following his Jesuit years, his next chapter afforded him the opportunity to teach in Phoenix, Arizona…he taught 7th grade – multiple subjects. Oh, the stories he shared…” Ornery kids,” he would say. He loved children but teaching them full-time had its’ challenges.

In 1983 my dad and I drove through Phoenix on our way to St. Louis…I still have visions of him barbequing steak, drinking red wine with dad, and dancing around the fire pit.

Mark was the life of the party. As a young child, my dad had a tradition of taking us kids and friends camping at Kennedy Meadows each June in the Sierra mountains of California. Mark would join dad on these trips when he could. I can see them sitting around the fire making HoBo coffee and apple pie. These traditions continued when Mark retired from teaching and moved to San Jose, California. As we had children of our own, the Kennedy Meadows clan grew and grew.

Mark was in charge of the bowling tournaments in the redwoods… in the dirt and hand out trophies to winners which he found in dumpsters. Always the great recycler, he was a dumpster diver before it was “cool.”

Eventually, he moved in with my father after my mother died. It was so special seeing them both in the kitchen on Sunday mornings, drinking their coffee and reading the paper. In 2010, Mark told me he wanted to move back to Centerville. At first, I didn’t understand. I made him take me to Centerville to “prove” to me it was a good idea. …the rest is history.

For the last 12 years, Centerville has been an extended family for Mark. This community welcomed him home and I will forever be grateful to you. He is one of the most generous, humble, thoughtful men I have ever met.

He is survived by 27 nieces and nephews, hundreds of grand nieces and nephews, and, by a few special angels in Centerville…you know who you are.

I love you Mark, my “favorite” uncle.
Mark McConville
A Memorial Mass to honor Mark’s life will be held at 10 AM, Monday, June 13, 2022, at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Centerville with Fr. Timothy Armbruster officiating. Visitation will take place Monday, June 13, 2022, at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Centerville with the family greeting friends from 9-10 AM.

Memorials may be made to either NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) or to St. Mary’s Catholic Church and may be mailed to Lange Funeral Home and Crematory, ATTN: McConville family, 1900 South 18th Street, Centerville, Iowa 52544. Condolences may be shared online at