Cassandra L. CombsJuly 1, 1961 -- January 27, 2017
Cassandra L. Combs-Markland was born in Columbia, SC on July 1, 1961 to Rosa and Ray Combs. She departed this life suddenly and entered into eternal life with the Lord on January 27, 2017.
Cassandra graduated Boston English High School in Jamaica Plain in 1979. She started working for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in 1986.
She was a beloved member of the Metro Boston Recovery Learning Community for three years, serving as Director of Volunteers. She had a wonderful sense of humor. She was very outspoken, but with a lot of love. She will always be missed.
Marc "Moses" MallardNovember 2017
Marc Mallard, known as Moses in the recovery community, worked as the outreach coordinator for the NAMI Greater Boston Consumer Advocacy Network.
An enthusiastic and engaging speaker, he was a vocal and powerful advocate on the governing boards for a number of organizations in the Boston area, including the Boston's Mayor's Commission on People with Disabilities, the Disability Law Center and OneCare Implementation Council. Moses represented GBCAN and the Peer Community with knowledge, joyfulness, charisma, and an indelible sense of humor. He was driven and fearless in his work. He spoke in his own voice--never using jargon, acronyms or platitudes.
Warm-hearted, good natured and playful, Moses was very observant of people. He knew how to put people at ease. He also loved animals, especially his beloved Mister--a tiny white and gray ball of fur that followed Moses everywhere he went. Mister was Moses' service dog and Moses loved to show everyone how wonderfully trained Mister was. He never walked him on a leash, not even across the busiest Boston streets. Mister and Moses were truly one.
Moses was wise. He set a good example and a high standard for peers to follow: through many hardships that he had faced, he always found a way to hope, to persevere, to keep learning, to come back stronger and smarter. He inspired all of us to be our best selves, to always try a little harder, to support each other, to search for new knowledge and skills.
The MBRLC community is deeply saddened by Marc Mallard's passing. We will miss Moses more than our words can tell. We will honor him through our work, our friendships and the vision of a better future for all of us.
He loved pictures and art. Eloquent, intelligent, and warm to everybody, he was in demand as a public speaker. He was also a talented singer and writer. A former Director of Recovery Services for DMH, he was a valued member of the MBRLC, and his absence is deeply felt.