The Passing of Another Member of the Greatest Generation - My Mom
Another member of the Greatest Generation is gone. My mom, Betty Martin, died peacefully early Saturday morning. We all miss her, but she is in a better place.
Today (Oct. 3) marks two very important occasions in Mom's life - it was on this day in 2005 that she went to live in the nursing home and it will be this day in 2007 when my father and I pick up her possessions for the last time at the nursing home. I truly appreciate all that the nursing home staff did for my mom and my family during this two-year period.
Over the next months, the HealthCentral staff have graciously agreed to let me use these shareposts to salute my mom so that people know how special she was (before Alzheimer's took over her life), to try to make sense of the past few weeks as well as the past two years, and to describe how strange it will be to create a life without Mom's physical presence. I hope that my shareposts help others to move forward through this difficult stage of life, but - honestly - I have to say I'm writing these just as much for myself.
So with that, I wanted to share a portion of Mom's obituary and photo (a candid shot taken at my brother's wedding) that appears in today's newspaper in Odessa, Texas:
Betty N. Martin, 83, passed away September 29, 2007, after a long struggle with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) and Alzheimer's disease. Born in Independence, Missouri, Betty was a devoted daughter, wife and mother, a consummate professional, and an individual who was passionate about exploration, whether it be in learning, creativity or travel.
After graduating from Missouri Valley College, Betty became a high school teacher and basketball coach, and then shifted into a very successful career in retailing. She married Lewis J. "Jack" Martin, in 1955. In 1960, Betty moved into the role of homemaker, providing guidance, discipline and support to the Martins' two children, Dorian and Steve. In 1972, Betty and Jack purchased Leggett's Fabrics in Odessa, Texas and soon after, Betty began working part-time in the store. Her role in the store quickly expanded, and eventually she managed a second store, which opened in Midland, Texas. She retired in 1994 and moved with Jack to Austin, Texas. Diagnosed with COPD in 1997, Betty and Jack returned to Midland, Texas in 2000 where she resided until 2005, when she moved to be nearer to her daughter for medical reasons.
Betty leaves behind her husband, Lewis J. "Jack" Martin; a daughter, Dorian Martin; a son, Steve Martin; and a granddaughter, Samantha Martin.
A private ceremony for family is planned. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made in Betty's memory to Missouri Valley College or the Alzheimer's Association*.
* A donation has been made by The HealthCentral Network to the Alzheimer's Association on behalf of Betty Martin.