Oakdale Electric Cooperative Awards the Late Mark Chew, with Selfless Service Award
Oakdale Electric Cooperative [OEC] believes in the power of individuals stepping forward and using their talents for the benefit of others. In an effort to thank these outstanding individuals for their selfless service to their community, the co-op is recognizing one nominated individual quarterly for his or her volunteer work with a Selfless Service Award.
Mark Chew only lived in the Warrens area since 2019 but made a large impact on the community. His restaurant, Marco’s Italian and American Grill, is a staple in the Warrens area. Mark not only treated his patrons like family but the entire surrounding communities as well. As a sponsor of the Village of Warren’s Annual Tree Lighting Festival, Mark invited community members to donate ornaments to decorate the tree and provided a free community meal afterwards.
When the Warrens Cranberry Festival was cancelled in 2020, he was instrumental in organizing a golf fundraising event that raised over $20,000 for the Town of Lincoln Fire Department. Close friend, Linda Pierce, stated, “If it weren’t for Mark, those organizations may not have raised adequate funding in 2020. Mark took it upon himself to do something.” A fundraiser that was orchestrated quickly from one man with love for his community, is going on its third year as an annual event.
Mark had a heart that just kept giving. He held a multitude of fundraising events for the local animal shelter and supported youth and local organizations in the area. Some of those being Chasing Daylight Animal Shelter; Town of Lincoln Fire Department; Warrens Trail Twisters; Tomah Wrestling; and more. Linda Pierce, stated, “When Mark saw a need for help, he stepped up and did his part, no questions asked.”
Linda and Kevin Pierce have been friends with Mark and his wife, Lan (Cindy) Chew, since day one. Kevin stated, “I noticed someone new bought the place and looked like it was open for business. I stopped in and Mark stated they weren’t open yet but served me a drink anyway. From there on, it’s been known that I was his first customer.”
A man that may not have been in the area for long, left a lifelong impact on the community. Mark sadly passed this past December after a brief health battle. He is survived by his wife, Lan (Cindy) Chew, and children in Iowa and Pennsylvania. “His impact on the community will never be forgotten,” stated by Linda Pierce.