William "Bill" Martin (1937 - 2018)

Obituary
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  • "I met Bill in 1968 in Dillingham and marveled at his..."
    - Larry Kaniut
  • "Super great guide & guy. y condolences to the family. Bruce..."
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    - H Jimerson
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    - JD
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Long time Alaska resident William "Bill" Martin passed away peacefully on Jan. 10, 2018, surrounded by family and friends. A memorial service and mass will be held on Jan. 30, 2018, at 4 p.m., at St. Benedict's Catholic Church, 8110 Jewel Lake Road in Anchorage, Alaska.
Bill was born in Dallas, Ore. He was preceded in death by his parents, Mildred and Luther Martin; and sister, Janet. Bill is survived by his wife, Mary, of 46 years; daughter, Tami; son, Rob and daughter-in-law Julie; daughter, Ann and son-in-law Steve; and beloved grandchildren.
Following high school graduation and a year of college, Bill joined the United States Navy and a career as a sailor was cut short by an unfortunate on-ship injury. However, this disappointment was turned into an opportunity to work in Alaska.
The day of the great earthquake of 1964, Bill was due to leave Portland for Anchorage to begin his summer only position with the Alaska Department of Fish & Game, but was delayed a week with an eventual arrival on Kodiak Island. Unwilling to leave Alaska at the end of his first summer season, he accepted a winter position assisting with the construction of the power line in Talkeetna. It was this tenacity for achieving his goals that led to an eventual full-time position and notable career with the Alaska Department of Fish & Game, ending with his retirement in 1972.
Immediately thereafter, Bill purchased land from Jay Hammond and began a second career as a pilot guide and sport fish lodge owner/operator. In 1973, he and his wife, the greatest partnership of his life, opened the Royal Coachmen Lodge and enjoyed a 38-year-adventure in what he always considered God's country. His son Rob writes: "He was an outdoorsman and a pioneer in Alaska's bush aviation. He loved hunting and fishing almost as much as he loved his family." After many tales, stories and successes, in 1999, he and wife Mary relocated to the Aleutian Islands with the opening of the Cold Bay Lodge. This was a wonderful opportunity to support the local community, the Coast Guard and travelers/visitors of all nations.
Bill, an avid conservationist, supported organizations throughout the world and most especially in Alaska until the day of his death. He recently fulfilled a lifelong dream of sport fishing in Argentina with his son, grandson and wife. This was a truly spectacular event and epitomizes Bill's zest for life, adventure and travel.
Bill will be laid to rest in Dallas, Ore., on Feb. 19, 2018, at 1 p.m., at the First Christian Church. The family asks, in lieu of flowers, that donations be made to the National
Multiple Sclerosis Society: https://secure.nationalmssociety.org/site/Donation2?df_id=55995&55995.donation=form1.
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Funeral Home
Kehl's Legacy Funeral Home
11621 Old Seward Highway
Anchorage, AK 99515
(907) 344-1497
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Published in Anchorage Daily News on Jan. 21, 2018