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In Memoriam – Mary Mark Zeyen

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Mary Mark Zeyen, professor emeritus of music and former vice president for academic affairs, died June 25. She was 95.

Zeyen joined what was then the Department of Music in 1975 and received emeritus status in 1990; she served in academic affairs for four years, until 1979. She was the first woman to hold a vice presidency at Cal State Fullerton.

The acclaimed chamber music and concert pianist played concerts throughout the country, and recorded for Capital Records, Layos and Orion. She and her two sisters performed professionally as the Zeyen Trio.

She co-authored two books, “Piano for the Blind Child” and “Music in the Middle Ages and Renaissance,” and wrote numerous articles for various publications. An authority on teaching music to the blind, she lectured extensively on the subject.

Interviewed in 1977 for a campus publication, Zeyen shared sound advice for professionals: “Use your own yardstick. It’s more important that you feel you did a job well than for someone else to think so.”

Before coming to Cal State Fullerton, she was first dean of the School of Music, then executive vice president of Immaculate Heart College. In announcing her appointment as vice president, CSUF president L. Donald Shields stated, “Dr. Zeyen has demonstrated exceptional creativity and imagination in academic program development.” Zeyen received her B.A. from Immaculate Heart College in Los Angeles, her master of music degree from the University of Southern California, and her Ph.D. from the Eastman School of Music at the University of Rochester.

She is survived by her sister, Sally Zeyen McGahan, and several nieces and nephews, as well as their children and grandchildren. 

A memorial mass to celebrate Zeyen’s life will be held on Thursday, July 12, at 10:30 a.m. at the Old Mission Church, 15151 San Fernando Mission Blvd. in Mission Hills. Donations in her memory may be made to the Immaculate Heart Community, 5515 Franklin Ave., Los Angeles, 90028.