Morgan Dov Strasser, 47, passed away peacefully on January 20, 2016 after a long, brave battle with cancer. He is survived by his wife, Maria Laura Sanchez Puerta; his children, Julian, 6, and Clara, 4; his parents, Nelson and Tamara Strasser; his sister, Teresa Strasser; and many beloved cousins, second cousins, two nephews, and one niece.
Morgan was a beacon of courage and strength, an honest and warm person to all who met him. As a student, he graduated from the University of California at Berkeley before getting his law degree from the University of Santa Clara. For most of his career, he practiced estate law working for the U.S. government, and co-workers knew him to be both reliable and sharp. Morgan was a loving husband and father and enjoyed spending time with his family and practicing photography on his beautiful children. His passions were travel, tennis (he loved the U.S. Open, in particular), Bay Area sports teams (Warriors, 49ers, and Giants), and anything sweet or covered in dark chocolate. He loved movies, in particular “The Princess Bride” and “As Good As It Gets.” The hero of the latter says, “You make me want to be a better man,” and Morgan had that effect on many who knew him, challenging us to match his sweetness, fairness, kindness, and generosity of spirit. He spent his last days with his wife and children, still funny, smart, and a good listener until the very end. A special thanks to his best friends, Phil Gruebele and Mike Tschudin, who were there for him until the end, to the doctors, nurses, and aides of the Johns Hopkins University Hospital and Capital Caring, and to all of Morgan's loved ones for their support and care.
In lieu of flowers, the family prefers donations in Morgan's memory to Life With Cancer or the American Cancer Society. A private service for the family will be held on Friday, January 22. The family will receive visitors at home on Saturday, Sunday, and Monday, January 23-25 (please send a text message before coming to 812-345-7024).
We encourage friends and family to leave a message, share photos and videos, or post a video message of your memories of Morgan. This page will serve as a remembrance of Morgan for his children and for all of his loved ones.
"To all of Morgan's Family--We are thinking of you all and will always remember your sweet and gentle husband, father, son, brother, uncle, cousin, nephew, friend. Morgan was such a kind soul and loved by so many. Julian and Clara: Always know that you are surrounded by people who loved your dad and look forward to telling you all about him as you grow up."
I actually met M Laura when she was starting to date you. She mentioned you were a tennis fan. Later on when I met you, I discovered in you one of the biggest fans ever, maybe a top 5! I really enjoyed our tennis chats. Then you moved to bigger things of course. You created life, and you leave with us the fruits of your beautiful love with M Laura, two loving and beautiful kids, Julian and Clarita, that radiate joy wherever they go. We are very lucky to have met the 4 of you. Peace, F//"
"Oh Laura, I am so sad to hear about Morgan. He was such a gentleman and my introvert ally in the world of World Bank extroverts. May his kind spirit live on in Julian and Klarita. Jon"
"I remember meeting Morgan along the Potomac in Alexandria one cold and misty winter day. He had his camera with him and was taking in the beautiful - peaceful - scene. Our love to Julian, Clarita, and Laura"
"I met Morgan almost 20 years ago in Fresno. We became friends and eventually both moved to the Bay area and continued to stay in touch and hang out until Morgan moved away. I have so many wonderful memories. From movie nights, Dinner in Palo Alto, hiking at the lake and riding watercraft , going to Yosemite and trying to hike to half dome even after we saw the sign "trail closed". He was so kind and so easy to talk to. I was very lucky to have known him and am so sorry for your loss, Strasser Family. This world is not the same without him.
Rachelle (Eisenberg) Fischer"
"Dear Maria Laura,
I am deeply saddened by your loss and I want to express my sincere sympathy to you and your family. I will include you in my thoughts and prayers."
"Lau - our hearts hurt for you and your beautiful little children. We only met Morgan once, several years ago, yet we have such vivid memories (along with some great pictures) of that wonderful experience. Lots of laughs for sure.
Please know that we are thinking of you all constantly and sending you love always.
Cory & Allison"
"My dear sweet brother was the nicest person I've ever known. He was incapable of being phony or mean, because he was fair and kind and gentle to his very core. He was funny and smart, a great big brother until his final days. He was such a proud dad, and you can see it in the pictures he took of Julian and Clara, flying through the air, captured in time. He will always be in my heart and it's hard to imagine this world without him. For some reason, I like to think of him on this one occasion, I have no idea where or when, but we were sitting together at a bar and he ordered four drinks: a water, a coffee, a beer and a cocktail. Each one, he told me, served a purpose. For some reason, I couldn't stop laughing at the time, because he was a very serious person in many ways, but also quirky and light-hearted - a mixture in a specific proportion that was just him, a special blend. Only the good die young. I don't know if he would bust my chops for quoting Billy Joel or respect it. I love you, Morgan."
"To Morgan's Family;
I worked with Morgan quite a bit in Kentucky. He was always fun, and made our work day easier. Morgan was great to be around. One of the best compliments an attorney can receive is to be recognized by his peers as an expert in his field. Morgan had acquired that status. I'll keep him and his family in my prayers. I know I'll see him again some day and we'll laugh and have fun together once more."
We have such a fond memory of Morgan from a little time we had together. He's always a real gentleman and a loving person. We treasure those memories and we really miss him. We keep you in our thoughts and prayers. Big hugs to you, Julian and Clara"
"Me uno en su dolor y tristeza en este momento tan difícil.
Me cuesta encontrar las palabras para expresarles lo mucho que lo siento.
Lauri y familia: les mandamos un cariño grande,los queremos mucho!
He will be sadly missed by many."
"Before Laura met Morgan, she talked often about wanting to find the right man with whom to share her life and build a family. When they came to Ithaca and we met, is was clear immediately that they were right for each other. Their lives together, and their beautiful children, Julian and Clarita, exemplified what a loving family could be. I am sorry that Morgan did not live longer and that we did not have the opportunity to get to know one another better. My condolences to all his family and friends; we have lost a good man."
"Morgan, I already miss you. Your smile and pacific attitude, along with your strength and courage are inspiring. I look up to you. I will always take care of your lovely kids and remind them the courageous, sweet, and awesome dad they have."
"I had the pleasure to spend time with Morgan and Phil in 1989. Lots of loving memories. I remember Morgan being funny, strong, fair and honest. I do wish his wife, children, family and friends all the best in filling a void Morgan has left, but also the undoubtedly many happy memories that will linger on."
"Morgan you were the kindest person i ever met. You will always be remembered. Sleep well."
"Dear Maria Laura,
I would like to express my sincere condoleces for your huge loss. You and your family are on my prayers.
"We have nice memories of Morgan’s kindness and positive attitude over the years we have known him. Our thoughts and all our love to Laura, Julián and Clarita.
Besos, Alexandra y flia"
"We are so terribly sorry for your loss. We are thinking of and praying for you all during this difficult time. If there is anything at all that we can do, just let us know. Much love, the Caseys"
"Morgan, we will miss you. You are warm and kind person I ever met. Laura, anything I can do for you, let me know."
"Dear Morgan, you were ALWAYS one of our very favorite cousins.
Funny, sweet, awesome listener, knowledgeable, super smart and gentle. I wish so much I could have visited with you more recently.
You're at peace now and I know in some capacity we'll all be reunited again. Much love forever, your cousin Sharon"
"Dear Family, I did not have the pleasure to meet Morgan but he was for sure a great warrior. Maria Laura, all my love to you and your two loving children. I'm sure Morgan is in peace now like my dad and he will take care of you all.
Here is a poem that Phyillies Barrantes sent me when my dad left us almost a month ago...
Do not stand at my grave and weep.
I am not there; I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow.
I am the diamond glints on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
I am the gentle autumn rain.
When you awaken in the morning’s hush
I am the swift uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circled flight.
I am the soft stars that shine at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry;
I am not there; I did not die.
Mary Elizabeth Frye
Love, Soledad Echarte and family"
"Morgan, thank you for giving us such a high example of courage, love and integrity during these last difficult months. You are lifting our souls and hearts. You and your family are in our prayers"
"I worked with Morgan in E&G 12 years ago. He was always nice, knowledgeable. RIP."
"God bless Morgan, Laura, Julian, and Clarita. You are all in my thoughts and prayers. Please let me know what I can do to help."
""Being a better man" to the end...Morgan was a worrior like I never seen before. We would like to extend our condolescene to her famy and friends. We light a candle with the promise to remember him and support his family during this difficult time. With love, Guerson Family"
"Thank you Morgan for your always present smile. We will continue seeing your smile in your beautiful family. Love you all."
"You will always be with me"
"Morgan, you will never be forgotten. I'm glad to know your gentle soul
Your family will be in my thoughts and prayers."
"Gracias, Morgan, x haber hecho feliz a mi amiga Lau todos estos años. Por haberle dejado esos dos hermosos hijos y todos los buenos momentos q pasaron. Así, tu paso x esta vida no fue en vano."
"Morgan, we will always remember you as an incredibly kind person, a wonderful husband and father who was so fun to spend time with. We are keeping your family in our prayers."
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