Boulder police investigating death of former Steamboat Today editor

Matt Stensland
Investigators at the scene off Colorado Avenue in Boulder, where the body of Mark Louden was found Wednesday.
Courtesy/ Paul Aiken / Daily Camera

— Boulder police are investigating the death of former Steamboat Today editor Mark Louden.

Boulder County Coroner Emma Hall stated in a news release that Louden, 45, was found Wednesday morning in a small wooded area near his residence at 1141 Monroe Drive in Boulder.

An autopsy was performed Thursday. Toxicology tests were ordered, and it could be six to eight weeks before a cause of death is known. There is no initial cause of death, according to the coroner.

Boulder police were only classifying the incident as a death investigation. Sgt. Paul Reichenbach said Friday that a detective had been assigned to the case. The detective was not working Friday, and Reichenbach did not have more information about the case.

“At this point, we don’t believe there is any public safety issue,” Commander Kerry Yamaguchi said Friday night.

The Boulder Daily Camera newspaper on Friday quoted Boulder police Sgt. Robyn Van DerLeest as saying it was a

“non-suspicious incident.”

Louden’s first job after graduating from Colorado State University was as a reporter at the Steamboat Today. He worked for the newspaper from May 1995 through April 2001. He was promoted to editor in November 1999.

“Mark was intelligent, driven and precise in his approach to leading our newsroom in covering the community,” Steamboat Today Publisher Suzanne Schlicht said. “He had a deep caring side to him as well. He was extremely bright and ambitious and rose through our organization quickly. He did a lot of good things for the newspaper and the community. It’s a really tragic loss.”

Louden met Harper Bookman while the two were working as reporters at the newspaper. They were married for 10 years and have two sons, Ford, 13, and Hayes, 11.

After leaving the Steamboat Today, Louden worked in communications for TIC at their corporate office in Steamboat. Louden left Steamboat in June 2012 when TIC moved its office to Denver.

Louden stayed active in the lives of his sons, and they visited Louden while he was working at a ranch in Longmont.

“The boys would come down there and have that ranch lifestyle,” said Harper Louden, who lives in Steamboat with her sons.

While working at the Steamboat Today, Mark Louden became close friends with Andrew Bisbee.

“He was a hardworking, creative, extremely intelligent, dedicated guy,” Bisbee said. “I know he loved his boys. It’s a loss for sure.”

Louden had recently started working as editor and content strategist for Boulder-based American Solar Energy Society.

Louden was a passionate writer, who had just published his first novel, “Brave of the Dark.”

He was born in Boulder and was raised in Colorado Springs, where he attended Air Academy High School.

Louden served in the Air National Guard and was deployed to Yemen during Operation Desert Storm.

He was active in the Steamboat lacrosse community and coached. He also published Lacrosse Magazine.

Louden’s visitation will be begin at noon Sunday at Ahlberg Funeral Chapel in Longmont. The funeral service will follow at 1 p.m. Burial will be at 11:30 a.m. Monday at Longmont Mountain View Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to the Mark Louden Memorial Fund, with proceeds going to his sons’ education. Checks can be made out to Mark L M F and mailed to: The DeJongs, 2394 C Santa Fe Drive, Longmont, CO 80504.

To reach Matt Stensland, call 970-871-4247, email or follow him on Twitter @SBTStensland

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