Mark Blazis, nature lover, instructor, humanitarian and award-winning author, dies at 74

In March 2004, Mark Blazis led a gaggle of Auburn Center College college students on a subject journey to the Quabbin Reservoir.

Mark Blazis, an authority on fishing, bird-watching, bear monitoring and all issues outdoor, died Wednesday.

His Outside column within the Telegram & Gazette was a favourite of nature lovers for greater than a decade. He hung out as a science instructor in Auburn.

In his most up-to-date column, printed Monday, he wrote about his nephew Nicholas Blazis, a industrial fisherman who acquired caught in a hurricane off Cape Cod.

“Most of us don’t admire them even for a second once we take pleasure in our haddock or cod fillets,” he wrote of those that name the ocean their office.

Blazis, 74, traveled the world as a sportsman and naturalist. He was a famous hen researcher, recording greater than 6,000 species.

Mark Blazis

Mark Blazis

“The world misplaced a terrific man,” Telegram & Gazette Govt Editor Dave Nordman stated. “Mark cherished his household, the outside and Worcester. He was a instructor, mentor and buddy to everybody he met — a legendary author, however a lot extra.

“You discovered one thing each time you learn Mark’s column,” Nordman added. “And he did not miss one for over 10 years. Even when he was touring to Galápagos Islands or Antarctica for 2 or three weeks he’d file 10 columns earlier than he left.”

Blazis led expeditions by means of his enterprise, Mark Blazis Safaris, usually bringing medical groups into the rainforests alongside the Napo River in Ecuador.

He wrote a number of subject guides on the fauna and floras of Massachusetts.

He was a science instructor in Auburn, as soon as being acknowledged as nature educator of the yr by the Roger Tory Peterson Institute. He grew up in Worcester, attending the previous Classical Excessive College.

He started writing the Outside column for the Telegram & Gazette after the passing of Joe Michniewicz in 2005.

Blazis, who leaves his spouse, Helen, and two kids, lived in Grafton.

His older brother, Bruce F. Blazis, 85, died Nov. 4.

“Mark’s passing is an incredible loss to the sporting and conservation neighborhood,” MassWildlife Director Mark Tisa stated in an announcement “Mark was a staunch supporter of environmental conservation, which was eloquently expressed by means of his writing. I thought-about him a very good buddy and know he will likely be missed by us at MassWildlife.”

Telegram & Gazette outdoors columnist Mark Blazis wrangles a pair of bear cubs in 2015.

Telegram & Gazette outdoor columnist Mark Blazis wrangles a pair of bear cubs in 2015.

Deb Cary, the neighborhood advocacy and outreach supervisor for the central area of Mass. Audubon, first met Blazis in 1985, when he was organizing subject journeys for the Auburn Center College and would later assist Mass. Audubon manage journeys of their very own.

“He has all the time been interested by what we’ve been doing at Mass. Aubudon in Worcester and particularly in Central Mass.,” Cary stated. “He had a statewide perspective, really a worldwide perspective on so many conservation points. He was all the time enjoyable and educated to speak to. He would usually report in his columns on tasks and packages we had been doing. Only a actual buddy to conservation, bird-watchers, to kids, everyone who cared about nature.”

Cary stated he was an everyday for Mass. Audubon hen bandings.

“There’s in all probability nothing extra thrilling than holding somewhat hen in your hand,” Cary stated. “You get such an up-close expertise and I feel that’s one thing Mark had with tons of and tons of of individuals.”

Fellow outdoorsman Michael Roche of Orange, a member of the state Fisheries and Wildlife board, is a longtime buddy of Blazis. Each wrote in regards to the outdoor.

“By means of his writing he was simply such a terrific communicator of the outside expertise,” Roche stated. “The newspaper columnist is a dying breed and nobody did it higher than him in speaking the outside message.”

Roche, an educator like his buddy, stated Blazis wrote in a approach that everyone in each stroll of life would higher perceive the outside world.

“He was an icon, an absolute gentleman and a terrific instance to everyone in regards to the he communicated the outside.”

Joseph Afonso, president of the Worcester County League of Sportsman Membership and the co-chair on the Mass. Conservation Alliance first met Blazis on the Nimrod League of Holden and referred to as him a “true sportsman.”

“Mark all the time went out of his technique to help Worcester County League of Sportsman Membership, all of the sportsman membership round Central Mass. and the actions occurring and would usually embrace critiques of the completely different occasions we have had and the issues we had been doing in his articles,” Afonso stated. “So not solely was he an avid sportsman, he would exit of his approach to assist those that had been simply beginning off within the sport, however help the golf equipment and the sporting neighborhood in his writing as nicely.”

Afonso stated Blazis and his voice will likely be powerful to switch within the space.

“It is a blow to the sporting neighborhood, having misplaced Mark, the wound is clearly very contemporary and it may take a while as we have simply misplaced a – if not the – most outstanding voice within the sporting neighborhood in Central Massachusetts.”

In June 2006, Blazis led a bird study hike at Fort Hill Farms in Thompson, Connecticut. His wife, Helen, is in center.

In June 2006, Blazis led a hen examine hike at Fort Hill Farms in Thompson, Connecticut. His spouse, Helen, is in middle.

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Mike Shattuck of the Telegram & Gazette workers contributed to this report.

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