Cover photo for Juan Marcos Rodriguez's Obituary
Juan Marcos Rodriguez Profile Photo

Juan Marcos Rodriguez

February 19, 1998 — July 2, 2024

Orono, ME

Juan Marcos Rodriguez

     Juan Marcos Rodriguez, known to friends and family as Marcos, died at the age of 26 at Harvard Forest, Massachusetts, on Tuesday, July 2, 2024. He was the son of Meredith (Pusey) and Pablo Rodriguez. 

     Born in Arizona, Marcos spent most of his childhood in El Paso, Texas. From an early age, two things were clear to those around him - he loved dinosaurs and couldn't stop reading. This childhood passion developed quickly into an appreciation for science and a love for learning. He graduated from El Dorado High School in 2016 as the salutatorian of his class. He then continued his studies at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island where he pursued a degree in biological sciences, with a focus on evolutionary biology. An active member of the Brown academic community, he was always engaged in research and often served as a teaching assistant at the University. 

     Marcos soon developed a passion for sharing his knowledge with any and all who would listen. After his graduation from Brown in 2020 he looked for opportunities to meld teaching with his love for the sciences.He eventually settled at the University of Maine where he pursued his Master of Science in Ecology and Environmental Sciences. He continued to work as a teaching assistant, with the hopes of someday becoming a professor. In his teaching roles, he strove to be an active educator and mentor, helping to guide students taking their first steps into the worlds of ecology, evolution, and conservation. His work in Harvard Forest followed this trend, as he mentored new research assistants and helped them adjust to the responsibilities of being a scientist. 

     When not in the lab or the classroom, Marcos could be found making his home in the great outdoors. An avid hiker, he spent much of his time on the trails and with the trees. No matter who he was with, he never missed an opportunity to inspect a plant he didn't recognize or call out an invasive species that didn't belong. In Maine he became a fledgling hunter, spending his weekends searching for squirrels and birds. If he had any luck on the hunt, his housemates and friends would be treated to stews, roasts, and the occasional experimental dish. This, combined with his constant attempts to perfect his crepe recipe and replicate his Abuelita's empanadas, meant that everyone was always well-fed when he was around. 

     In addition to his parents, Meredith and Pablo, Marcos is survived by his siblings, Lucas, Julia, Jennifer, Chris, and Jesse; his maternal grandmother, Suzane Pusey; and his paternal abuela, Clotilde Mendez de Rodriguez. He also leaves behind a large family of aunts, uncles, and cousins. He will be buried in a private service in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania so that he can remain close to the greenery that captivated him. 

     In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Harvard Forest research station.  Serving as his first foray into field research and a place where he developed a love for nature, we hope Harvard University will use the funds to continue providing the experiences Marcos received there to future generations of students. To donate online, please visit the memorial fundraising page via: https://www.tmcfunding.com/funds/harvard-forest-in-memory-of-marco-rodriguez/10703/

For paper checks: checks payable to Harvard University - with "Harvard Forest - Marcos" in the memo line. Mail to: Harvard Forest ATTN: Clarisse Hart, 324 North Main Street, Petersham, MA 01366. 

      Arrangements are by Matthew Grieco of Grieco Funeral Home & Crematory, Inc. (484-734-8100). To view his obituary and share memories with his family please visit www.griecofunerals.com 

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