In Memoriam William Martin ‘65

The Rev. William Henderson Martin, Class of 1965, priest, teacher, musician, photographer, died May 11, 2018, at age 94. Fr. Martin spent most of his ministry in the Episcopal Diocese of the Rio Grande. He was Vicar of St. Mary's, Lovington, NM, and in El Paso, Rector of Christ the King, associate at St. Alban's, and in retirement, for periods of time, cared for Holy Spirit, St. Luke's, St. Frances on the Hill, St. Christopher's, and All Saints. He touched the lives of many through his work in Cursillo and church camps, and through the retreats and quiet days he frequently conducted.

From 1967-1969 Martin was chaplain at St. Luke's Hospital, NYC, and the State Hospital for Mentally Ill in Philadelphia. During this time, he was also associate priest at the Cathedral of St. John the Devine, NYC. In 1982-1983 he interrupted his ministry here to be Rector of St. Paul's Anglican Church, São Paulo, Brazil. Before ordination, he taught in high schools in West Texas, Sul Ross State University, and the Escola Graduada de São Paulo. Martin was one of the founders of Hospice of El Paso and served as their first chaplain. It is fitting that this caring group ministered to him at the time of his death. 

Martin was a World War II Veteran, having served in the South Pacific, an accomplished organist, and a sensitive photographer. He is a graduate of McMurry University, Abilene, and North Texas State University, Denton, before General. Fr. Bill, as he was affectionately known to parishioners and colleagues, embodied all that was best in a Christian and a priest, a true man of God, wise counselor, inspiring preacher and teacher, and a source of encouragement and strength to all. In his love which he gave so freely, Fr. Bill showed us the face of Christ.

He was born in Sonora, Texas, May 7, 1924, to John Allen and Willie Henderson Martin, and grew up on a ranch near Sonora, in Del Rio and San Angelo, Texas. He is preceded in death by his parents, four brothers, John, Sam, Taylor, and Robert, and four sisters, Gladys Taylor, Mary Martin, Mabel Ellis and Debbie Almond. He is survived by his wife of 71 years, Joan Herndon Martin, nephews, nieces, and a flock of loving friends. 

Services were at St. Alban's Episcopal Church, 1810 Elm Street, El Paso on June 2, 2018.