Date of interview: 9 March 2019
Colonel Mayerstein attended Washington and Jefferson College where he played football and hockey. He then attended the Jewish Theological Seminary of America’s Cantorial School and served for a year in a pulpit in a synagogue in New Jersey. After a tour in Vietnam attached to the Army’s 5th Special Forces at Kontum, RVN, which was shortened by injury, he finished college graduating with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Education. In 1974 he joined the USAF and, after flight training, was assigned to the Strategic Air Command. At various bases, he was a B-52 bomber crewmember, instructor, and Flight Commander, served in a number of staff positions, was a Squadron Officer School instructor, and was a B-52/KC-135 Aircraft Maintenance Squadron Commander twice.
Colonel Mayerstein finished his 24-year Air Force career at the USAF Operational Test and Evaluation Center, Kirtland AFB, Albuquerque, NM as the Operational Test Logistics Officer for the B-2 Program, and then the Operational Test Manager for the Predator Unmanned Aerial Vehicle program, and two highly classified, multi-service, cruise missile acquisition programs. Ordained to the Gospel Ministry after retirement, he earned his Master of Divinity Degree. After a 1-year hospital chaplaincy residency, he was a Hospice Chaplain for many years. He is currently writing the dissertation for his Doctor of Theology Degree.
Pastor Mark now serves at the First Baptist Church of Rio Rancho, NM where he was the Director of the church’s 7-year mission to Belgorod, Russia. He teaches a Bible Study class, and leads the annual Messianic Passover Seder. Pastor Mark was a volunteer Chaplain for 5 years with the Albuquerque Police Department. Also, he hosts a weekly Christian commentary radio show. He has written and published four books and is currently writing a commentary on the Book of Ezekiel.
MWSA: How long have you been associated with MWSA?
Mark Mayerstein: For about 6 months.
MWSA: What was your inspiration for your book?
Mark Mayerstein: Because of the impact writing it had on my PTSD, it took 38 years to complete the task. It was actually part of my therapy, but my prime motivation was to enable my family to better understand why I had acted the way I did for so many years.
MWSA: What do you expect to get from your MWSA membership?
Mark Mayerstein: I anticipate that through interaction with other authors and by participating in the competitions, my writing will improve.
MWSA: If someone were to ask you if they should join MWSA, what would you tell them?
Mark Mayerstein: I would reply that if they only joined one writing organization it should be this one, because the potential for improvement and networking are many and varied.
MWSA: How many other books have you written and published?
Mark Mayerstein: Three: Two Bible Commentaries (Esther and Galatians) from a Jewish perspective, and a book entitled Eyes of the Viper that details my personal experiences with PTSD, the therapies I underwent, what precisely I was required to do during that therapy, how I felt, what I thought, and what were my greatest stressors. I was as transparent as I could possibly be, even though some things were fairly embarrassing. It was the cost I was willing to pay for a completely honest rendition.
MWSA: Are you working on another book now?
Mark Mayerstein: Yes. I'm writing a commentary on the Book of Ezekiel, which will be followed by commentaries on the Books of Isaiah and Jeremiah. My goal is ultimately complete a series covering the Old Testament Prophets.