July 29, 1926-Sept. 30, 2007
BENKELMAN -- Harry P. Martin, 81, died Sunday (Sept. 30, 2007), at Good Samaritan Hospital in Kearney.
He was born July 29, 1926, on his family's farm north of Benkelman in Dundy County, to Raymond E. and Lula C. (McBride) Martin, and attended school near his home. He graduated from the University of Nebraska School of Agriculture at Curtis, in 1945.
On May 13, 1945, he married Merrella Howard at Benkelman.
In 1954, he and his family began a long career in farming. He was honored with the Upper Republican NRD 1992 Conservation Award, and was one of the first in the area to implement irrigation. He did most of his own mechanical work, and as a young farmer, took classes in welding. He became a 4-H leader working with beef, welding, rope, and electricity. He and Merrella received the Meritorious Service Award for their many years of 4-H leadership.
He was a lifelong member of the United Methodist Church, first at the rural Mount Zion Church, and later at the Benkelman United Methodist Church. He was a member of Justice Lodge No. 180 A.F. & A.M. where he was a Past Master. He was also a member of the Tehama Shriners, and rode his motorcycle with other Shriners in area parades.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Raymond and Lula Martin; his parents-in-law, Merrel and Maude Howard; and brothers, Dudley, Noel, Nathan and Melvin.
Survivors include his wife, Merrella Martin of Benkelman; children, Terry Martin and wife, Verla, Kathy Stahlecker and husband, Lonny, Merrel Martin and wife, Linda, all of Benkelman, and Derrel Martin and wife, JoAnn of Lincoln; sisters, Helen Adams of Curtis, and Iona Yost of Wray, Colo.; sister-in-law, Mildred Martin of Otis, Colo.; 15 grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren.
A memorial service will be Friday, 11 a.m., at United Methodist Church in Benkelman with the Rev. Brian Fong officiating.
Visitation will be Thursday, from 1-6 p.m. at Forch Funeral Chapel in Benkelman.
In lieu of flowers, it is suggested that memorials be given to assist in various community projects.
Arrangements are under the direction of Forch Funeral Chapel of Benkelman.