Cover photo for Doris Martin's Obituary
Doris Martin Profile Photo

Doris Martin

d. January 16, 2021

Doris Martin, 91, of Detroit, MI passed away January 16, 2021.

Doris Martin was born on December 25, 1929, in Brownstown, Pennsylvania to the union of Berry Booker and Lillian Booker (formerly Tompkins). Her father was a coal miner which meant moving on from one company town to the next. So, the family eventually moved to Beckley, West Virginia, where Doris was raised in early life, prior to their relocation to Detroit.

She was a graduate of the former Detroit Commerce High School which was connected by an overhead bridge to the old Cass Tech H.S. building downtown. Although she chose to follow a business curriculum there, after graduation she enrolled to take post-secondary classes in art school. She had quite the talent for it and might have become a very good illustrator in the booming Detroit auto industry or in advertising. Ultimately, though, she chose family and motherhood over an art career and instead made a success of that.

After graduation, she met and fell in love with Thomas Lawrence Martin here in his native Detroit, where they married on November 5, 1949. Our father was a first-generation American; his parents were immigrants from the British West Indies seeking the promise of a better life through good-paying jobs offered in Detroit’s auto industry. Like so many others before them, they entered the U.S. through Ellis Island in New York harbor.

She was baptized as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses in Milwaukee, WI., at the Life-giving Wisdom District Assembly held there in the Summer of 1957. She was only 27 years old at the time and had already brought five children into the world, starting out with a set of twins (Antonette and Antony). She and our father took all five of us along with them on that occasion, including our newborn brother Cydney. Also, our dear family friend Angela Montecino traveled with us. That loving gesture on her part has resulted in dozens more getting baptized, Including her sister Anita Smith. This was true both within our immediate family and beyond through her many students over the ensuing 63 years.

Our mother loved to travel. For many years she was a regular on the annual Spring tour of the Watchtower headquarters facilities. Each year at the end of May would find her preparing for the trip, and on her way to Brooklyn, Wallkill and Patterson New York, and before 9-11, Niagara Falls, Canada.  Additionally, it would include the Holocaust Museum, in Washington DC. There have been times when 28 or more of her family would accompany her on these trips. She would always be the last one back on the bus. The tour organizer would always wait patiently for her.

She never lost her love of art, as well as a love of popular music. She was very talented in drawing, illustration, painting, sewing, ceramics, and dance. She shared her love for the arts with her children and grandchildren. She introduced her children to a variety of art forms and creative activities like ceramics and painting. Also, she always corrected our speech and would not tolerate improper behavior of any kind.

One of her favorite past times was to be at Hart Plaza for the weekly music festivals. She was visited weekly at her favorite spot there, by friends and family. She was a beloved figure all summer from the Country Hoe Down to the Jazz Fest. In her later years, she always loved to be outdoors admiring the flowers and varieties of plant-life of Jehovah’s creation. She used these opportunities to witness to her neighbors.

She has one surviving sister Anita Smith, and two sisters-in-law, Cynthia Booker and Katherine Hickman. Five children: Antonette Daniels (husband Ervin), Antony Martin (wife Marie Myrna) Annette Martin, Cynthia Tidwell, and Cydney Martin (wife Linda). 18 grandchildren, 33 great-grandchildren, and three great-great-grandchildren. Nieces, nephews, and a host of dear friends and loved ones whose children she spiritually adopted along the way. She always loved them as much as her own children.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Doris Martin, please visit our flower store.


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