Mark Troy was born in St. Louis, Missouri. He holds degrees from Quincy College in Quincy, Illinois, Washington University in St. Louis, and the University of Hawaii, Manoa in Honolulu, Hawaii. he lived in Thailand for five years as a Peace Corps volunteer, teaching English and supervising student teachers. It was there that he acquired a taste for Thai food. He has traveled extensively in South East Asia, India and Nepal. After obtaining his doctorate from the University of Hawaii, he worked for several years in educational research before moving to Texas and joining the staff of Texas A&M University. He currently lives in Texas with his wife. The Troys have two sons, a daughter-in-law, and two grandchildren. Mark has skydived, acquiring over twenty-eight minutes in free fall. He has finished eighteen marathons.