Ralph Gilbert Martin (1916 - 2012)

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Lt. Col. (Ret.) Ralph Gilbert Martin, 96, of Shalimar, Fla., passed away at home July 1, 2012.
Ralph was born in Chicago and grew up in Detroit. He was a graduate of Olivet College and joined the service in 1939, where he became a pilot for the Army Air Force flying P38s during World War II and served his country for the next 28 years. Ralph retired at Eglin in 1967 and has since been a resident of Shalimar.
Ralph traveled the world and had a love for people and life. He always had a smile on his face and had a kind word for all. He loved sports, but especially golf. Ralph was a technical advisor for the film, "Towards the Unknown," filmed at Edwards Air Force Base and instrumental in bringing the F105s to Eglin AFB. He was a long-time member of the Rotary Club, Chamber of Commerce, as well as numerous other associations.
Ralph, one of three brothers, is survived by his loving wife of 66 years, Jane; brother, Allen; sister–in-law, Ina, wife of brother, Howard (deceased); and children, Roger and wife, Jeanne Miller, Linda and husband, Jimmy Bailey and Steven. His grandchildren include Kimberly Martin and husband, Paul, Bret Bailey and wife, Jessica and Clint Bailey; and great-grandchild, Colt Bailey.
The family would like to extend a special thank you to Rosa and Monica who provided endless hours of loving care, and Emerald Coast Hospice.
Funeral services will be conducted on Thursday, July 5, at 11 a.m. at McLaughlin Mortuary, 17 Chestnut Ave., Fort Walton Beach, Fla. The family will receive friends one hour prior at the mortuary. Interment will follow at Barrancas National Cemetery, Pensacola, Fla., at 2 p.m.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Fort Walton Beach Rotary Club Scholarship Inc., P.O. Box 0892, Fort Walton Beach, FL 32549.
Expressions of sympathy may be viewed or submitted on line at www.mclaughlinmortuary.com

Published Online in Northwest Florida Daily News from July 3 to July 5, 2012
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