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Willie Earl Martin
December 26, 1943 ~ June 21, 2023 (age 79) 79 Years Old
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Earl’s earthly journey began on December 26, 1943. He was the first of four children born to parents, Willis Martin, Jr. and Lela Henderson martin in Oak Grove, Louisiana. The family moves from Oak Grove to Texas City, Texas in 1952. This is where he spent his formative years. He attended Booker T. Washington School and Greater Barbour’s Chapel Baptist Church of Texas City. He entered the Navy, serving his country from 1961 to 1966. On discharge, he returned to Texas City, where he lived for several years before he eventually joined his sister, Barbara in Jefferson. Soon all four siblings were together living in the Jefferson area. A new journey began. He met and married his wife of 44 years. They moved to Dallas after living in Jefferson for a few years. After six years of marriage, they were blessed with a son, whom he adored. His sisters-in-law often joked, calling them “Lucas and Mark” from the television show Rifleman. The final earthly journey came with the decision to move back to Jefferson to raise their child. Earl spent 15 plus years working in Carthage’s Tyson Foods Plant. He worked there until illness forced him to retire at the age of 76. The family who will cherish Earl’s memory: wife, Betty; sons, Rodrick Phifer, William “Bugg” Martin (Terri); sisters, Barbara Martin Jones (Curtis, Jr.), Vera “Vee” Horton; grandchildren, Brandon “Kash” Martin, Zay’Vion “Zay” Martin, Xa’Leiah “LeLe” Martin; in-laws, Curtis Jones, Sr., Sammie Parker Jenkins (Rufus), Bernice “Bern” Parker Harrell (Jerry), Maurice Brown (Joyce); nephews, Roy “JoJo” Horton III (Roberta), Curtis “Bo” Jones, Jr. (Davia “Dee”), Vincent “Vince” Brown (Olivia), Samuel “Bill” Parker, Jerrod “Tank” Harrell, Christopher “Chris” Jones (Dena), Robert “Doc” Martin, Jr., Randal “Ran” Jenkins; nieces, Lena “Scoody” Horton English, Keithanie “Keith” Singleton, Regina “Gina” Hoton, Adrienne Brown, Valarie “Dee” Parker; special friends, Clarence Martin, Maurice Mathis, George Watkins, Jr.; aunt, Mabel “DeeDee” Hales; god-daughter, Ty’Kia Mims; and a host of relatives, cousins, friends, including his Texas City, as well as Jefferson extended families and Booker T. Washington alumni.
Services for Mr. Willie Earl Martin, "Jive Wilie", 79, of Jefferson, Texas are 1:00pm Saturday, July 08, 2023 at Lewis & Walker Funeral Home of Jefferson, Texas.
Willie was born December 26, 1943 and transitioned June 21, 2023, at home surrounded by friends and family.