Martha Ann Carroll
April 5, 1927 - March 19, 2021
NORMAL - Martha Ann Carroll, 93, of Normal, Illinois, died at home on March 19, 2021. A private memorial service will be held at St. Matthew's Episcopal Church, Bloomington, Illinois. Officiating will be The Reverend John Richmond. A drive by visitation open to all will be held in the circular drive at the front of the church at 1920 Oakland Blvd. on Wednesday, March 24 from 11:00 a.m. to noon. Please remain in your car. Internment rites will be held at the family burial plot in Tennessee with The Reverend Christine Hopkins officiating at a later time.
Martha was born April 5, 1927, in Bells, Tennessee, the only child of Bonnie and E. Carmack Smothers. "Bunt," the nickname given her by her father as an infant, grew up in the small town of Bells, not far from Memphis. With the comfort, love and security of her parents, aunts, uncles, and cousins she learned the importance of family, which stayed with her all her life.
She attended the local school where she developed her passion for books and reading. Her high school years were those of World War II. There was no part of her life that was not touched by this war.
Her college life began at Freed-Hardman College in Henderson TN, but later she transferred to Southwestern (now Rhodes) in Memphis where she received a BA in English. She was a member of the Chi Omega sorority. After graduation, she married Conrad E. Carroll in 1949. He died in 1980.
Her Illinois teaching career began in Stanford and continued on with the consolidation of Olympia High School. She taught for 24 years and during this time she attended ISU in the summers and obtained an MA in English. After retiring in 1983, she volunteered at the Loaves and Fishes soup kitchen for 18 years.
Martha was active in the Episcopal Church at Christ the King and at St. Matthew's serving as a Vestry member, Lector, Chalice Bearer, and on the Outreach Committee. She especially enjoyed the Thursday morning prayer group.
She loved to read, usually belonging to two book clubs. She took art lessons and continued to paint and draw for many years. She traveled with her favorite place being the island of Crete where there was a connection with a Greek family. And she was devoted to her many dogs through the years. At the time of her death her one cat, Alex, stayed in the hospital bed with her.
Martha is survived by her wonderful children who filled her life with hope, joy and love: Christine Hopkins (Mike) of Urbana, Illinois, John W. Carroll (Valerie) of Bloomington, Illinois, Kevin E. Carroll (Tammy) of Bloomington, Illinois; eight grandchildren: Matthew Hopkins (Amanda), Carolyn Hopkins, Grace Meyer (Brady), Lauren Carroll, Robert Carroll (Catherine), Patrick Carroll, Colin Carroll, Desiree Carroll; and nine great-grandchildren.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to St. Matthew's Church Outreach Committee or the Humane Society of Central Illinois.
The family wants to particularly thank Kindred Hospice and Synergy Home Care whose dedicated workers provided tender care and support during the final days of Martha's life.