OBITUARY: Robert (Bob) Earle Martin 1927-2023

by | Nov 16, 2023

It is with deep sadness we announce the passing of Robert (Bob) Earle Martin, our loving father, grandfather, neighbour, and friend. Bob went to dwell in the house of the Lord on Oct. 28, 2023. He died peacefully at the Carleton Manor, surrounded by the prayers and songs of family at his bedside.

Bob was predeceased by his parents, Captain Leslie and Clara (Vaughn) Martin; brothers Charles and Donald; sister Marguerite; son-in-law Timothy Welch (Melodie); his beloved wife of 69 years, Margaret; and many cherished Wilson kin: David and Pearl, Ronald and Florence, Clare and Phylis, Leonard and Nellie, and Ruth (née Wilson) and Coburn Patterson.

Bob is survived by his sister Cherie, sons James (Kathy), Donald (Chantal), and Paul (Kristin) Martin, daughters Melodie Martin and Cindy (Wes) Corey, 11 loving grandchildren, one beautiful great-granddaughter and many loving nieces and nephews. He will be dearly missed by all who loved him.

Born in Philadelphia, PA, on Sept. 15, 1927, Bob was the second of five children. He lived in Durham, NC, as a young child before the family moved to Canada when he was about 10 years old. Bob attended school in Nova Scotia and began basic training with the Canadian Armed Forces at age 17. He was to be deployed for service overseas the same year the war ended.

Bob later relocated to New Brunswick and was involved with the Canadian reserve force and the Carleton-York Militia Regiment.
In 2017, he was honoured with an invitation to the ceremony marking the 100th Anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge in France, where he was very proud to meet the future King, Prince Charles.

One fateful day, as Bob was looking to select a gift for his mother from Creaghan’s in Fredericton, he met the stunning Margaret Wilson working at the cosmetology counter. Marg sold him a bottle of Chanel No. 5 and captured his heart. She would go on to tell her children and grandchildren this story in the decades to come, always recalling with a grin how handsome Bob looked in the hat he wore that day.

Bob and Marg married and eventually settled in Woodstock, NB, where they raised their five children. After working for the Home Finance Company, Bob joined brother-in-law Leonard in the family car business and later helped establish the first Toyota franchise in the area.

Most memorably, he channelled his entrepreneurial spirit together with Marg as they opened The Style Shoppe, operating out of their home on Main Street. They soon outgrew these modest beginnings and became a cornerstone of the Carleton Mall, where customers relied on Bob’s taste for the latest fashions and his warm, welcoming smile.

Throughout his lifetime, Bob invested deeply in the communities he was a part of. In addition to fostering local business enterprises, Bob lent his time and talents to numerous organizations that were meaningful to him. Among these were the Lions Club of Yarmouth, NS, where he served as Charter President and District Governor; the Atlantic Baptist Foundation, serving as Treasurer and in various roles for over 35 years; and the Woodstock Unit 95 ANAVETS, which he was proud to serve as Treasurer – a role he continued in through the age 95.

Over his decades of volunteer service, Bob supported the good works of these groups and countless others, including Gideons International, Children’s Aid Society, Y’s Mens Club, Boy Scouts, Royal Canadian Army Cadets 318 (Woodstock chapter), and the Royal Canadian Legion in Woodstock. As a long-serving member of the Woodstock United Baptist Church, Bob taught Sunday School, sang in the choir, offered guidance and leadership as a Deacon, and was relied upon throughout the church community for his wisdom, wit, and profound faith.

During the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, Bob joined the local relief efforts of Families Helping Families, speaking words of comfort and reflection and offering the blessing as volunteers assembled each Sunday to distribute meals to those in need.

Above all else, Bob was a devoted husband and family man, enjoying nothing more than a gathering of Wilsons, Martins, and Coreys in his home on Grover Street. Whether for a meal, a game of crib, a cup of coffee, or just some quiet, sage advice, Bob adored sharing in the company of family.

He was always ready with a clever joke or amusing story, stirring up laughter and delight all around him, especially from the children and the kids at heart. Known for his sharp intellect and careful record keeping, Bob meticulously archived the unique accomplishments of each of his grandchildren for whom he felt immense pride and affection, often playfully boasting that he had taught them “just a fraction” of what he knew.

Bob did, in fact, find joy and value in hobbies, leisure, and learning pursuits of all kinds and loved to share these with his grandkids. If ever they took an interest in a new subject, Bob would be quick to research and study it diligently himself, always keen to support any endeavour a loved one chose that may lead them on a path of purpose and personal growth.

Bob loved the community he and Marg made their home and spoke often of the great kindness and goodness of the people in it. He was always available to anyone needing a helping hand and was exceedingly grateful to those who offered the same generous spirit to him and his family.
Resting at the Culberson Funeral Home, 188 Connell Street, Woodstock, NB.

Bob’s funeral service was held Tuesday, Oct. 31, at 11:00 a.m. and was officiated by Rev. Craig Woodcock at the Woodstock Baptist Church. Donations in memory of Bob may be made to the Carleton Manor, Woodstock Unit 95 ANAVETS, or another local charity of the donor’s choice.

Funeral arrangements are in the care of Culberson Funeral Home in Woodstock.

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