Mark Higgins, of Chicopee, MA, passed away at his home on July 4, 2020. He was born in Holyoke, MA to Stephen Higgins Jr. and Rose Higgins (Demers) on August 15, 1958. He spent his childhood mostly in Holyoke, MA, before leaving to live and work briefly in the Bay Area, CA. After returning to western Massachusetts he met and married Debra Higgins (Lariviere) of Holyoke, MA. Enlisting in the Navy in 1981, he served at two bases in Beeville, TX then Lihue, HI. While serving in Texas, he also began his long career in law enforcement as a reserve officer. He continued working in law enforcement while stationed in Hawaii, where he and Debra had their first son, Daniel, in 1987. He returned back home once again after leaving the military in 1988, soon afterward he graduated from the police academy and had his second son, Nathan, in 1989 while living in Springfield, MA. After briefly serving in Springfield he transferred to the Chicopee Police Department, where he worked as a patrol officer, a firearms instructor, an SRT commander, and a detective. During this career he moved to Agawam, MA, where he resided until 2015. He then moved to Chicopee, MA several years before retiring as a lieutenant in 2017. In the last couple years, realizing there was no hope in trying to simply sit still, Mark worked security at a local business with several former law enforcement officers as well as his son’s long term girlfriend, Ashley.
In 2007, Mark earned his private pilots license, beginning a long awaited and meaningful time in his life when he could live out his dream of flying. Mark loved everything about flying, spending many hours practicing out of Barnes Airport. He cherished sharing his passion with anyone remotely interested, where he could lose himself in the focus, the beauty, and the freedom of the sky. Additionally, Mark was a lover of music, an armchair philosopher, a sensitive, introspective, caring man who tried to not take himself too seriously, while appearing to be such a serious man. Having such a difficult upbringing, witnessing and experiencing the cruelty that some humans inflict on one another, he was summoned to law enforcement to help others suffering as he did. While he was not a perfect man, as none of us are, he took this calling seriously and it weighed on him heavily at times. He took responsibility for his life path and decided to not be ruled by his trauma and his lack of guidance, and was able to provide his sons with a relatively stable and privileged life, for which they are eternally grateful. His family loved him deeply, and he will be missed by many from his childhood, travels, the local flight community, and law enforcement for being a shoulder to cry on, an honest confidant, a helper in times of crisis, and a man to share a laugh with, so long as you picked up on his sense of humor.
He is predeceased by both his parents as well as his brother Stephen Higgins III. He is survived by his sons, Nathan and Daniel, their mother Debra, as well as his siblings, Matthew Higgins, Theresa Bean, Patricia Scarborough, and Sandra Guerro. Services will be on Thursday July 9, 2020 from 4 to 7 P.M. In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to a charity of your choice. Mark was especially fond of the Progeria Research Foundation.
Remember everyone, be smart, stay safe, and have fun
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Mark Stephen Higgins, please visit our floral store.