Chesapeake - John Henry Martin, 74, of the Western Branch area, passed over to meet Jesus face-to-face on Saturday, July 7th, 2018. He was vying to make the liver transplant at Cleveland Clinic in Ohio when complications consumed his body. Born October 9, 1943, in Martinsville, he was a Virginia son, served his country, and built a life for 52 years in the Norfolk/Chesapeake area.
Many knew John Henry as a real estate broker for Century 21, Western Branch, over 40 years. He was proud of his military service in the Vietnam War in the U.S. Army Infantry earning a bronze star and company infantry badge. He was often seen wearing his prized Vietnam hat.
A hard worker and life-long learner, John Henry graduated Churchland High School in 1962 and the Norfolk Naval Shipyard Apprentice School in 1966. Received an AA in Business Administration from the Tidewater Community College as well as the Armed Forces Correspondence School. Graduate of the Sorensen Institute at University of Virginia Candidate Training Program in 2002 and Political Leadership in 2003.
What John Henry prized more than anything, his true joy, was his family. He survived his parents, George and Nellie Martin and had six siblings.
He is survived by constant companion and life partner of 23 years, wife Michelle "Chelle" Lynne Brooks Martin. He was the proud father of two daughters, Andrea V. Bright of Midlothian and Amber V. Martin/Godwin of Suffolk and her three children, Jasmine Warner, Sydney Martin and Cooper Bright. Was the step-father to two step- sons, Nathan Lachman of Brea, CA and Aaron James LeMay of Fountain Valley, CA; and one step-daughter Aubree LeMay of Canton, GA. He is survived by three sisters, Nancy Mitchell of Suffolk, Eva Marie Meeks of Sunbury, NC and Betty Clarke of Reidsville, NC
and three brothers, James Lee Martin of Jackson, NC, David Martin of Chesapeake and Vance W. Clark of Eden, NC and nine grandchildren.
John Henry loved life. He loved to travel, meet new people, have a good laugh, work in his yard, visit with family, serve his community and go to car shows. He loved his little beagle, Gracie, and kitty, Nicka who found him at a parking lot as an abandoned kitten. To know John Henry is to know his generous heart. As a boy his family instilled serving others, as exemplified with his military service, and is life-long service to his community. He worked tirelessly for many organizations that benefitted children and his service is an example to all of us that one life can make a difference. He served on the Chesapeake Redevelopment and Housing Authority, Board of Equalization, Parks & Recreation Advisory Board, Lake Drummond Masonic Lodge, Republican Party, and Rotary Club; was PTA President of Western Branch High School; youth athletic coach for twelve years; Hampton Roads and Virginia Association of Realtors; Chesapeake Sports Club, South Norfolk Ruritans and the Khedive Shrine Center. John Henry was a joyful man. He loved his family, his country and his God. A member of Western Branch Community Church, he was a thankful man for all of God's blessings, including several miracles of healing.
All are welcomed to celebrate his life Thursday, July 19, 2018 at 10 a.m. at the Community Church of Western Branch by Pastor Sam Powell. Burial with military honors will follow at the Albert G. Horton, Jr. Memorial Veterans Cemetery. The family will receive friends at Community Church of Western Branch on Wednesday, July 18th from 6-8 p.m. Sturtevant Funeral Home, Portsmouth Blvd. Chapel is handling these arrangements.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Khedive Shrine Centers Hospital Fund.
Condolences may be made to the family online at www.SturtevantFuneralHome.com