Lots of memories ... too many to tell. Met Johnny Crawford in person, sometime around 1968. He autographed my hand, lol. I too, was in love. Even had his records.
But, for his Mother, on the show, she died, although I'm not sure we ever learn how it happened. I remember one show, very clearly however, when Lucas says he had buried her 7 years earlier, in Oklahoma. Mark appeared to be maybe 12 yo at the time. I somehow vaguely remember that she got sick, but I'm not positive about that fact.