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Ida May Ladd Martel

1931 - 2017 Obituary Condolences
Ida May Ladd Martel Obituary
Ida May Ladd Martel

AGE: 86 • Wilmington, Del.

Ida May Ladd Martel, 86, passed away with her family at her side on Saturday, February 4, 2017, after a long battle with Alzheimer's. Ida was born in Hackensack, NJ on January 30, 1931, and she spent most of her life in the Wilmington area. For the past 15 years, she was a resident at the Country House. She graduated from P.S. DuPont High School in 1948 and the University of Delaware in 1952 with a degree in Home Economics. At UD, she was active in many activities and participated on the synchronized swimming team. In September of 1952, she married Jim Martel at St. Stephen's Lutheran Church in Wilmington. After a brief career as a nursery school teacher, she became a full-time mother to care for her four children. She often taught as a substitute teacher in the Alexis I. DuPont School District. Later in life after the death of her husband in 1980, she worked fulltime for the University of Delaware as the registrar at the Wilcastle Center in Wilmington. She retired from the University in 1996 after 15 years of service.

While raising her family, Ida was a dedicated volunteer and supportive mother. She was a Girl Scout leader for many years and served as president of the Alexis I. du Pont Parent Teacher Association (PTA). She volunteered for the American Field Service (AFS), for which she also served as a host for an exchange student from Sweden. She was active in the UD Alumni Association, and proud to have five generations of her family as graduates. Other volunteer service activities included working at Kentmere Nursing Home, Winterthur, the Delaware Art Museum, and as a Sunday school teacher at Christ Church Christiana Hundred, which she belonged to for more than 60 years. She was devoted to her children, grandchildren and friends.

Ida loved to travel and visited sites throughout the US and all over the world, including Sweden, England, Ireland, Israel, Turkey, China, Australia, and New Zealand. She spent many summer days at Snuff Mill Swim Club but also enjoyed summer vacations in Lewes, Delaware, and Stone Harbor, New Jersey. She was an avid swimmer, reader and bridge player.

Ida is survived by her four children and their spouses: Victoria Martel Novak and her husband Edward of Bonita Springs, FL; Marianne Martel Tyler and her husband Stephen of Lincoln University, PA; Jamie Elizabeth Martel and her husband Michael Healy of Newport, RI; and James Ladd Martel and his wife Tracey of Wilmington, DE. She is also survived by nine grandchildren: Heather Tyler Chronister (Michael) of Coatesville, PA; Jennifer Novak Smith (Richard) of London, England; Jesse Scott Tyler of Los Angeles, CA; Brandon Flynn Tyler of Newport, RI; Geoffrey Patrick Novak, of Chadds Ford, PA; Kasey Ann Tyler of Lincoln University, PA; James Thomas Martel of San Francisco, CA; Taylor Morgan Martel of New York, NY; and Christopher Ladd Martel of Wilmington, DE. She has four great grandchildren. In addition, she is survived by her sister, Larissa Ladd Green, of Sarasota, Florida. She is also survived by her only niece, Margaret Grier Malouf of Clinton Corners, New York.

Her husband, James P. Martel, III, died in 1980. Her brother Harold O. Ladd, Jr. and parents Harold O. Ladd, Sr., and Frances Buttles Ladd also predeceased her.

A Celebration of Life Service will be held at Christ Church Christiana Hundred, 505 Buck Road, Greenville, DE on Saturday, February 11th at 11 AM. There will be a reception immediately following the service in the Parish Hall. The burial will be private. The family is extremely appreciative of everyone's support and wants to offer a special thanks and recognition to the kind and caring staff at the Country House.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations in Ida's name to the University of Delaware General Scholarship Fund ( or the National Endowment for Alzheimer's Research (

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Published in The News Journal from Feb. 7 to Feb. 9, 2017
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