Before he was the for disappearing into the Meramec River near and Pacific, Christopher “Chris” T. Marks was an outgoing, athletic and caring 12-year-old boy.
Chris was the kind of Boy Scout who helped hikers out of a cave with a steady hand and a smile on a fifth-grade camping trip. He was the kind of hockey player who shouted encouraging words, even to the other team.
And he was the kind of person whose death ignited an outpouring of sadness, shock and support in the Affton neighborhood as well as in the Eureka area in which his body was found.
“He was able to touch us all,” said Kathy Brooks, Chris’ Cub Scout Den leader. “I believe that he would want us to celebrate his life.”
Chris was at the Pacific Palisades Conservation Area. Initial police reports indicate he drowned.
Chris is the son of Todd Marks and Elizabeth Combs. He leaves behind his brother Alex, his sister Katie and his twin Anna-Marie.
Family and friends remember Chris through his smiles: the mischievous smile jokester Chris wore when he was breaking the rules and he knew it; the knowing smile reserved for when he pretended to agree with adults but really didn’t; the I-just-scored smile punctuated by loud shouts of “Yeah!” during hockey games; and the encouraging smile his teachers say could brighten a classroom or a child’s spirits.
“When he smiled, his eyes danced,” said his great-aunt, Donna Sherman.
Chris wore thick, heavy skaters’ shoes without the laces tied, giving his gait a distinctive “clop, clop, clop”-ing sound. He sometimes paired the shoes with his sisters’ socks, which he argued were more comfortable and thicker than boys’ socks, even if they were pink.
His favorite song was “Bless the Broken Road” by Rascal Flatts, said his twin, Anna-Marie. “He told me he didn’t know why he loved it,” she said. “He just loved it a lot.”
Chris’ funeral is at 1 p.m. today, Aug. 13, at Kutis Affton Chapel, 10151 Gravois Road. He will be buried at Sunset Cemetery next to his great-grandfather, Sherman said.
The family is accepting