Marko the Rat
Marko the Rat (born September 28, 1971 - died March 7, 2018) also known as Marko T. Rat and Haal, was a fursuiter and plushophile, and member of the Westhaven furry household in Mount Gravatt, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. He was the life partner of Ristin. On March 7, 2012, after living together for over seven years, the pair registered their civil partnership soon after it became legal in Queensland.
Marko's fursona was a rat, of the species Rattus norvegicus, and he felt an affinity to this species even before he identified himself as a furry. In real life, Marko and Ristin kept two non-anthro pet rats,[when?] Izza and Bo, but they are both since deceased.
Marko owned two fursuits:
- Rattus, a grey rat, the second version of which was completed by RooFur in 2016.
- Toyroo, a beige kangaroo, made by Pouchhopper.
Highlights of Marko the Rat's furry history include:
- 1995-2000: Co-publisher (along with Jagafeh and Sebkha) of South Fur Lands, Australia's first furry fanzine (later published by Bernard Doove).
- 1996-1997: Co-tenant of Quarantine, possibly Australia's first furry house (or commune as it was then called).
- 1996(?)-present: Web administrator and founder of The Plush Palace, Australia's first plushie website.
- 1999-present: Web administrator and founder of Roophilia, a photographic resource on kangaroos and other native Australian animals.
- 2005-present: Co-owner (along with Ristin) of Westhaven, arguably[clarify] Australia's first wholly furry-owned and occupied house.
- 2015: Joined the committee of Furry Down Under Inc., the incorporated association that runs Furry Down Under. (He stepped down in late 2016 but continued to support the con unofficially.)
Conventions and events
Marko attended the following furry conventions and events (with milestones at each noted):
- Further Confusion 2007; 2008 (Marched at the front of the fursuit parade along with Raxmei, holding a banner designed by Madius commemorating the Chinese Year of the Rat. Performed minor roles in two skits for Furry Night Live.); 2010 (Hosted, along with Nicodemus, the Rodent Panel.)
- MiDFur X (2008) (Debuted his own skit for MiDFur's No Talent Show.); XII (2010); XIII (January 2012)
- Califur 5 (2009, Gophered)
- Anthrocon 2009
- Furry Down Under 2010-2016
- Eurofurence 17 (2011); 22 (2016)
- Midwest FurFest 2012; 2014 (Co-hosted a rodent room party with Dittman Rat); 2015
- RivFur 2012-2013
- ConFurgence 2014-2017
Marko also attended several furmeets in the Brisbane area. He fursuited in public parks and considered himself to be a "fandom ambassador", explaining the furry fandom to passersby.
Marko collected plush toys and accumulated quite a large collection. He was unable to sleep comfortably without plush. He was a full blown plushophile, though his main focus was cuddling them while he slept.
- Marko the Rat's profile on LiveJournal. Retrieved January 1, 2009
- "My beloved Marko T Rat passed away during the night after his battle with cancer. In the end he did pass peacefully and without suffering, which is what he wanted." - Tweet by Ristin, dated March 6, 2018. Retrieved March 6, 2018.
- "Civil partnership: Love, not politics" - posting on Marko the Rat's LiveJournal. Dated March 7, 2012. Retrieved March 7, 2012
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