Mark R. Hanschka


Mark Richard Hanschka of Sunriver and Portland, Oregon, died on June 1, 2014 following a brief illness. He was 80 at the time of his death.

In his youth, he was a frequent summer visitor to East Chop, and he maintained a lifelong connection to Martha’s Vineyard through his family here.

A dedicated doctor, Mark was also an avid runner, skier, backpacker, and mountaineer. He played classical piano, piloted his single-engine plane cross-country, traveled widely, and hiked with the Mazamas mountaineering club. He climbed the Pacific Northwest’s 16 highest peaks and hiked Kauai’s Kalalau Trail in a three-generation family backpack trip at age 76. He actively supported environmental causes and women’s reproductive rights.

Born on July 7, 1933, in Newark, New Jersey, he was raised in nearby Montclair. Mark graduated from Amherst College in 1955, attended Harvard Law School and MIT, and graduated from Harvard Medical School in 1961. Following a stint as an Army doctor, he practiced obstetrics and gynecology for 29 years at Kaiser Permanente in Portland. After retirement, he volunteered his medical services in Bend, Eugene, and Portland, Oregon.

Mark is survived by his wife of 27 years, Ezma Henry Hanschka, along with his sister, Carol H. Traenkle and her husband, Jeffrey, of Wayland and Oak Bluffs. His children include Stephen Hanschka and his wife, Buffy Trott Hanschka, of Portland, Ore.; T. Whitney Hanschka and his wife, Nancy Tutko, of Vineyard Haven; Laura Hanschka and James Suver of Scottsdale, Ariz.; Mark Lewis and his wife, Shannen Chapman, of Corvallis, Ore.; Teri Lewis and her husband, Michael Smith, of Corvallis, Ore.; and Christopher Hanschka and his wife, Stephenie Thang, of Sammamish, Wash. Other survivors include his stepchildren, Gretchen Souther Ranger and her husband, Tim Ranger, of Springfield, Ore., and Matt Souther and his wife, Bonni Stover, of Portland, Ore.; his niece, Wendy Traenkle Reagan of Medway and Oak Bluffs, and nephew, Jeffrey Scott Traenkle of Marion and Oak Bluffs; and ten grandchildren, including Eli and Lena Hanschka of Vineyard Haven.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Herbert L. Hanschka, and Grove T. Hanschka of Montclair, New Jersey. He was buried at Portland’s Riverview Cemetery in a private graveside service, with a memorial service at the Mazama Lodge on Oregon’s Mt. Hood in September. Contributions in Mark’s memory may be made to Planned Parenthood, Friends of Family Planning of Martha’s Vineyard, or the environmental organization of one’s choice.

Correction: An earlier version of this obituary incorrectly spelled the name of James Suver as Suvier.