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Roy O. Martin Jr.

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Roy O. Martin, Jr.

ALEXANDRIA, LA- Memorial services for long-time Alexandria resident, Roy O. Martin, Jr., will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday, March 25 at the First United Methodist Church, 2727 Jackson Street, Alexandria. Visitation will be from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Friday, and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, at Calvary Baptist Church, 5011 Jackson Street Extension, Alexandria, under the direction of Hixson Brothers, Alexandria.

Roy O Martin, Jr., 85, passed away at his residence on Thursday, March 22, 2007. He was born in Memphis, TN on June 3, 1921, to Roy O. and Mildred B. Martin. Roy, Sr., moved his family to Alexandria when Roy O. Martin Lumber Company began in 1923. Roy, Jr., graduated from Bolton High School in 1939 and attended LSU where he studied engineering. During this time, he met his future wife, Barbara "Bobbie" Morros of Bunkie, LA. They were married on October 8, 1942. During their 50-year marriage, they raised four children who all live in Louisiana with their families. World War II called Roy, Jr., to active duty after Pearl Harbor where he served his term sailing the Atlantic with the U.S. Coast Guard as a Machinist's Mate First Class. After his discharge, he returned to central Louisiana to fulfill his dream of entering the family lumber business. In 1962, he became president of Roy O. Martin Lumber Company, Inc., and continued until his retirement in 1978. During his tenure, the company modernized its Alexandria sawmill and expanded from a land base of 250,000 acres to well over 370,000 acres, making it one of the largest family-owned businesses in the South.

His leadership skills were noted by many other organizations. Roy, Jr., served as president of the Alexandria Lion's Club from 1957-58 and was recently recognized as one of the founders of the Crippled Children's Camp in Leesville as well as a lifetime member of the club. He served on the Rapides Bank and Trust Company Board of Directors until age 70. He was instrumental in the creation of Alexandria Country Day School as a charter member of the board of directors.

Stewardship was an integral part of his character. Roy, Jr., was a life-long, active member of the First United Methodist Church helping the facility to move from its downtown Jackson Street location to the present site. He served the Salvation Army as a Board Member and fundraiser for 50 years and was one of the few civilian recipients of the "Others" award, one of two in Central Louisiana. Under his leadership, this organization successfully raised $500,000 for a new building and shelter on Beauregard Street.

He was always politically active serving on the boards of PAR, LABI and the Louisiana Republican party. In 1980 and 1984, he served as a delegate to the Republican National Presidential Committee in Detroit and Dallas, respectively. Governor Dave Treen appointed him to the Board of Commerce and Industry where he served for four years.

In 1993, Roy, Jr.'s wife, Bobbie passed away after a battle with cancer.

On October 7, 1994, Roy Jr., married Vinita Johnson with whom he shared a common love of philanthropy. Over the course of their marriage, they established numerous scholarships, culminating with the thirteenth endowed professorship at LSUA, the Roy and Vinita J. Martin Endowed Professorship in Math and Science. They also supported the Prison Chapel ministry and helped to fund a chapel inside the Cottonport Prison.

Roy, Jr., was a long-time supporter of Louisiana Pubic Broadcasting, where he was honored in 2005 with the Louisiana Legends award alongside Ambassador Andrew Young, Kix Brooks, Sue Gunter and Paul Dietzel. In 2006, He was featured as "Cenla-ian of the Year" by the Cenla Focus magazine.

A devoted father, grandfather and great-grandfather, Roy O Martin, Jr., is survived by three daughters, one son and their spouses: Marilyn and Don Robbins of Dubach, Joyce and Bill Thibodeaux of Houma, Carole and Lee Baxter of Alexandria and Roy O. and Kathy Martin III of also of Alexandria; eight grandchildren: Nicole Harris, Ramona Miller, Lee Robbins, Stephen Couvillion, Edward Thibodeaux, Mark Thibodeaux, Christopher Martin and Laura Martin; and five great grandchildren: Susannah Jones, Jackson Harris, Audrey Miller, Donald Lee Robbins III, and Adrianna Robbins. He is further survived by two brothers and their wives, Ellis S. and Martha Martin of Pineville and Norman and Lorraine Martin of Kansas City, MO.; two sisters: Esther Floyd of Ann Arbor, MI, and Virginia M. Howard of Pineville. He is also survived by two step-daughters: Linda Vollman of Bunkie and Jan Ford of Natchitoches.

Pallbearers will be Lee Robbins, Stephen Couvillion, Edward Thibodeaux, Mark Thibodeaux, Christopher Martin and Brooks Harris.

Honorary pallbearers will be Captain Todd Brewer, Salvation Army; Lamar Joffrion, Alexandria Lion's Club; and the 50/50 Sunday School class at the First United Methodist Church.

In lieu of flowers,memorials may be sent to the Salvation Army (620 Beauregard Street Alexandria, LA 71301), LSUA Foundation (8100 Hwy 71 S. Meeker, LA 71477) or the First United Methodist Church (2727 Jackson Street Alexandria, LA).

To extend online condolences to the Martin family, please visit us at Hixson Brothers Funeral

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Published in Shreveport Times on Mar. 24, 2007
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