UPDATE 2: Bank of the Ozarks’ Mark Pennebaker Dies in Mexico

Mark Pennebaker, senior vice president for commercial lending for Bank of the Ozarks in North Little Rock, died suddenly Monday while on vacation in Mexico, EVP Susan Blair told ArkansasBusiness.com.

He was 51.

Bank of the Ozarks Chairman and CEO George Gleason issued the following statement:

“Mark Pennebaker blessed us with his enthusiasm, sense of humor, and deep commitment for helping others. He loved the Lord, life, laughter, his family, friends and community. He drew no distinction between his customers, his coworkers and his friends; he embraced everyone with his generous spirit and loyal friendship. His professional accomplishments are enormous, but we will remember Mark most as a valued friend and man of robust character.”

Pennebaker is survived by his wife, Kristi, and two children, Layne, 11, and Paige, 6. He is also survived by his mother, Patricia Pennebaker of North Little Rock; a brother, Bryan Pennebaker of Fort Worth, Texas; two sisters, Mary Pennebaker of North Little Rock and Laura Eppley of Rogers; and several nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his father, Kenneth Pennebaker, and a sister, Dianne “DeeDee” Pennebaker.

Kenneth Pennebaker moved his family from Detroit to North Little Rock in 1971 for an executive job with the original Twin City Bank, and Mark had lived in North Little Rock ever since, Mary Pennebaker said. He was a graduate of Catholic High in Little Rock and Rockhurst University at Kansas City, Mo.

Pennebaker joined Bank of the Ozarks on July 1, 1996, according to Blair.

“He had a great big personality,” Mary Pennebaker told ArkansasBusiness.com. “He was a great husband and father and son and brother.”

Pennebaker’s funeral will be handed by North Little Rock Funeral Home. No arrangements had been announced Tuesday afternoon. Mary Pennebaker said the time needed to transport her brother’s body back from Mexico made it unlikely that a funeral would be held before Friday or Saturday.

ArkansasBusiness.com will update this report.

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