Mark Samala Legacy Fund Donation

Mark Samala 1978-2019Lance Corporal Mark Samala is a United States Marines veteran, an artistic photographer and a brilliant videographer who had dedicated his life to humanitarian services around the world.  His talents extended beyond the visual arts and humanitarian services. He was an accomplished pianist who regaled his chosen audience with pieces both known and uniquely composed.

From 1998-2002, Lance Corporal Mark Samala served with honor as rifleman and computer systems specialist, gaining experience in special operations, foreign relations and cultural understanding. He was deployed around the world to countries such as Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, UAE, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Australia, and East Timor. 

After his military service, Mark studied visual communications at Cal State University Fullerton and started his artistic career as a photographer/videographer. He was a photo editor at the Daily Titan. He was a photographer for Zuma Press, Canadian Press, Walk Industries Fashion Group, Associated Press, Corbis, Splash News and the Garden Grove Journal. His experience in photography spans news, sports and entertainment. His photography works can be found in Newsweek, Life Magazine Online Edition, America Online, Yahoo, Orange County Register, Los Angeles Times and several other publications.

As a humanitarian, Mark had worked tireless to capture the heart of the numerous charity missions that he was involved with. His mission pictures and video inspire his viewers to strive for a greater cause, gives voice to the voiceless, and captures the joys and hope of the poor and destitute in the remote corners of the world. His selflessness was evident by him providing care and comfort to those who required extra attention in dire situations. Some organization that has benefited tremendously from Marks work include PVNF Project Vietnam Foundation (PVNF), VN Hope Alliance, VPASC Vietnamese Physicians Association of Southern California, PAA Portland Adventist, and many more.  

To the Project Vietnam Foundation, Mark is more than a volunteer, but a son, a brother, and a mentor who capture the giving spirit of the organization. He passed away peacefully at Kaiser hospital in Anaheim, California, USA, on Friday, May 24, 2019, surrounded by his family and PVNF friends.

In memory of Mark Samala, Project Vietnam Foundation has created The Mark Samala Legacy Fund as a way to perpetuate his passion for voluntarism and the media arts. The goals of the fund are to:

  1. Cover funeral costs and assist in resolving Mark’s financial obligations.
  2. Create a college scholarship to be awarded to one recipient annually who is in the field of journalism/media and has a passion for global humanitarian work. The recipient will receive scholarship to travel with our medical mission to take part in photography, videography, and media related work that serves to give a voice to the needy in Vietnam.
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