Late Alma town marshal remembered for kindness, fairness

ALMA, Kan. (WIBW) - The city of Alma has some big shoes to fill. Their town marshal Mark Falk passed away October 1st.

Alma resident Bryan Dudek says the town is in mourning.

"It's missing marshal,” he said. “Missing marshal 'cause he kept this town in line. He kinda kept this town glued together."

For 36 years, Falk kept Alma safe as the town's law enforcement officer.

Wabaunsee Co. Sheriff Rob Hoskins and Falk were close friends.

"He loved his family, he loved this community - he genuinely loved this community," Hoskins said.

Ceremonies held October 4th looked back at the man Falk was.

His celebration of life started in Topeka at the Angels Above crematorium, and the procession came to a stop at the Saint John Lutheran Church in Alma.

Falk's urn was carried inside the church, where family, friends, and fellow law enforcement officers came to pay their respects.

"He’s just a wonderful, wonderful man. I can't say enough about the impact this has had on the community," Hoskins said.

Sheriff Hoskins says Falk’s passing hasn't been easy.

"Mark was like a brother to me," he said. "I met Mark over 25 years ago when I worked as an investigator at Riley County. Gradually we just became very close. Any time we were around each other it was just great fellowship."

The two men often went fishing together. Falk's urn - a red and white fishing bobber - was a fitting touch.

But family was his main priority.

"Attending their sporting events was a priority for him. I'd call him up and say, ‘Let's go fish,’ and he says, 'No Hayden has a ball game,' I knew not to ask a second time," Hoskins said.

Dudek agreed.

"He was a big family man - grandkids, loved his kids, loved his grandkids even more, spoiled 'em to death," Dudek said.

Dudek said for the three years he's lived in Alma, "Marshal" made everyone feel like family.

"He was super friendly. He would wave at strangers. He'd wave at locals. He knew everybody, everybody knew him," Dudek said. "It's gonna be hard to replace somebody like that. There's just a big 'ol hole. He's left a big void but his name, his memory will live on."

Hoskins echoed that statement.

"It’ll take a long time to recover from this," he said. "Someone may wear his boots but his boots will never be filled."

Falk was surrounded by loved ones when he passed.

The night he died, he'd made soup for Alma's city employees and invited them to his home for a cookout. They say it's just another example of his generosity.