Steve Martin


Steve Martin passed peacefully Jan. 2, surrounded by family at Parkwood Healthcare Community in Bedford, Texas. He is survived by his wife, Sandra Martin (North Richland Hills, Texas); his three children: Kelli Martin Brew (Gainesville Fla.), Lori Martin Huffman (North Richland Hills, Texas), and Mike Martin (Shady Shores, Texas), 11 grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.
Steve was known for his integrity, sense of adventure, gentle wisdom and generosity. His family brought him much joy and he was a wonderful husband, father, papa and great-papa. Family came from near and far to see him off with music, hugs and a great deal of love and gratitude.
Steve was born in Orlando, Fla., in 1935 and spent most of his early life in Lake City, Fla. He left Lake City after high school to join the Air Force and was soon selected to be the radar operator in an RB50-G Superfortress during Cold War missions over Russia. Steve received the Distinguished Flying Cross for his service.
After leaving the military, Steve returned to Lake City, where he married his sweetheart, Sandra Dale Richardson, in 1957. Soon after, he began working at Moore Business Forms, a rival of IBM at the time, as an entry-level salesman. Over the years, his hard work, intelligence and belief in the company helped him rise to a senior-level sales executive. During his 30-plus-year career, Steve was a mentor and model of integrity in business for a generation of employees at Moore and for his family.
Steve loved the mountains. He took his family on numerous vacations to the Smokies and the Rockies before making a home in the beautiful San Juan range town of Pagosa Springs, Colo. He and Sandy hiked and jeeped with the Gray Wolves Club, camped with friends and were regularly on the slopes at the Wolf Creek Ski Area. He lived his dream of living in the west and enthusiastically shared it with family and friends.
Steve had many hobbies throughout his life. He loved to read and was a history buff. He loved music and built his own hi-fi as a young man. He became a private pilot as a young father and flew his family to visit grandparents, ski in North Carolina and island hop in the Bahamas. A Florida boy, he loved snow and would watch the weather reports for the exact right moment to leave South Florida to make it to Appalachia just before it began to fall (he was an expert at this). As a grandfather, he loved giving the grandchildren rides in Papa’s truck, taking them white-water rafting, horseback riding and fishing.
Steve and Sandra’s marriage was a model of love and commitment. They were married 60 years, and the strength and support that marriage provided allowed him to not only succeed in business, but to engage deeply in other life activities. Steve was a quietly spiritual man and was active as an elder in his church. He lived his faith through quiet acts of service, like helping an elderly widow shovel snow and driving cancer patients for chemo treatments in a neighboring town.
Steve struggled with dementia the last 10 years of his life. As his memories and personality faded, his family took comfort in remembering him and seeing his legacy in each of them and in their expanding families. The impact he had on their lives was evident in the gathering that took place during his last days, where children and grandchildren sang, laughed and cried together during his passing, grateful for the life he lived and gave them.
A memorial service will take place in Lake City, Fla., where his ashes will be buried in a family graveyard, next to his mother and father.