J. Robert Martin


December 6, 1923 - June 24, 2013

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J. Robert Martin (Bob), 89, died on June 24, 2013 at his home in Mechanicsburg, PA. He was born on December 6, 1923 in Lancaster, PA. to John H. and Barbara (Musser) Martin.

Bob graduated from Manor Millersville High School in 1941. After high school he attended Messiah College in Mechanicsburg and then Goshen College in Indiana where he earned a B.S. in Chemistry in 1948. Later, he enrolled at Penn State University where he was awarded a Ph.D. in Chemistry in 1950. Bob worked at the Hamilton Watch Company from 1945 to 1947 and the Dupont Company from 1950 to 1985. At Dupont Bob worked as an Analytical Chemist and later established the Occupational Health Division where he wrote safety standards for the company worldwide. In retirement he volunteered for 19 years teaching Chemistry, coaching student research, and serving as the Safety Director at Messiah College in Mechanicsburg.

Bob married Shirley E. Lenehan of Mechanicsburg in 1945. They were happily married for 51 years until Shirley's death in 1996. In 1998 he married Eva Lewis of Lancaster. They enjoyed 15 years together. Eva, a retired nurse, cared for Bob during his illness that extended for as long as 10 years.

Bob was an accomplished baritone soloist. As a young man he performed with the Byler's Male Quartet and appeared on the Quentin Everest Worship Hour radio program. Again as a volunteer, he served as the Minister of Music at the Evangelical Presbyterian Church in Newark, DE, for 30 years. In retirement he sang with the Grantham Brethren In Christ Church and Messiah Village's Singing Men.

Bob is survived by his spouse Eva; his siblings Esther and Aaron; his children John, Scott, and David; five grandchildren, and five great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his daughter Barbara, sister Ruth, and brother Clarence.

A memorial service will be held in the Chapel of Messiah Village in Mechanicsburg on July 8, 2013 at 2:00 p.m. A visitation will be held at the chapel from 1:00 to 2:00 p.m.

In lieu of flowers the family requests memorial donations be made to the Messiah Village Endowment Fund, 100 Mt. Allen Dr., Mechanicsburg, PA 17055, or to the Chemistry Department of Messiah College, Suite 3013, Mechanicsburg, PA 17055. (Checks can be made payable to Messiah College with "in memory of J. Robert Martin" in the memo line.)