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Mel Horowitz

Obituary for Mel Horowitz

November 2, 1938 - September 10, 2016
San Marcos, California | Age 77

Loving Husband, Father, Grandfather, Brother, and Friend


Melvin (Mel) Horowitz, Lt. Col., USMC (ret)
1938 - 2016

Wherever Mel was, there was laughter. On the outside, he appeared big and tough. However, those close to him knew that on the inside he was compassionate and generous, with a quick wit and sometimes raucous sense of humor. He treated everyone he met with respect and kindness, drawing others into conversation and developing relationships. Consequently, Mel was recognized nearly everywhere he went. He was a patriot who lived life with passion and zest and was devoted to his family and country.

Mel was born in Brooklyn, New York to Mollie and David Horowitz. He attended the University of Richmond on a full athletic scholarship, earning a B.S. in Business. As a strong proponent of education, later in life he earned an M.A. in Education and Counseling from the University of Virginia, and eventually an M.B.A. from National University. Upon graduation from the University of Richmond, Mel completed officer training at Marine Corps Base Quantico, Virginia. His duty stations included Hawaii, MCRD San Diego, Army Ranger School, two tours in Vietnam where he was wounded, two separate tours at MCB Quantico, New Orleans, Okinawa and Headquarters Marine Corps. Among the medals he earned are the Bronze Star with Combat "V", Purple Heart, Meritorious Service Medal, Joint Service Commendation Medal, Navy-Marine Corps Commendation Medal, and Combat Action Ribbon.

Following a successful career in the United States Marine Corps, Mel retired and he and his wife, Carolyn, returned to San Diego where they had lived many years earlier. In San Diego Mel began a second career, ultimately working as a civilian with the Navy Fighter Weapons School (Top Gun) and the Marine Corps at Camp Pendleton, before finally retiring to live in Lake San Marcos where he was an avid golfer.

After a long battle with cancer, Mel passed away peacefully on September 10, 2016. In addition to his devoted wife of 50 years, Carolyn, he is survived by their three loving children - Lynda Horowitz Ruiz (Craig), Mark Horowitz (April) and Todd Horowitz (Marcel) and five treasured grandchildren: Nicolas and Melina Ruiz, Ethan Horowitz, Sophia and Nadia Horowitz; brother Edward Howard of New York, numerous nieces, nephews and extended family members. All who knew and loved him will miss him very much.

Please join us for a Celebration of Mel's Life

Friday, September 30th
3:00 – 6:00 pm.
(Program with Military Funeral Honors begins promptly at 3:30)

Bay View Restaurant and Event Center
Marine Corps Recruit Depot
3800 Chosin Ave., Bldg. 132
San Diego, CA 92140

In order to be granted military base access, please RSVP to by 9/23.

If you wish to make a donation in Mel's memory, please consider Semper Fi Fund at or Scripps Hospice at

Recommended Local Florist

Suggested Memorial Donations

  • In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial contributions be made to:
  • Semper Fi Fund
  • In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial contributions be made to:
  • Scripps Hospice

Message from the Family

Thank you for your love and support during this difficult time. Please enhance this tribute to Mel by adding your favorite memories and photos. Remember, Mel loved to laugh.

Arrangements By

Allen Brothers Mortuary, Inc. - San Marcos Chapel FD-1378

435 N. Twin Oaks Valley Road
San Marcos, CA 92069
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