Lesta Martin

Obituary of Lesta Martin

Lesta Jean Elliott Martin, 77, of Rocky Mount, N.C. died January 29, 2017. Born June 20, 1939, in Springfield, Ill., Lesta Martin was the daughter of the late Eugene and Mildred (Gordon) Elliott.

In 1962 she was united in marriage to James Edward Martin. A 1957 graduate of Springfield High School, Lesta was described in her yearbook as, "sunshine talking on a telephone," with "a talent for putting people at ease" and a "contagious giggle." In 1961 she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Speech and Hearing from the University of Illinois, ranking in the upper 3% of students in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. She served as vice-president of Alpha Lambda Delta, a national honor society, and completed a Master of Education degree in 1965 from the University of Illinois.

Following graduation Mrs. Martin taught for five years in the Champaign Illinois School District. After moving to State College, Pa., she did private tutoring from 1969 to 2004. She earned four Pennsylvania certifications: Speech and Hearing, Reading Specialist, Elementary and Special Education. Mrs. Martin taught for the Central Intermediate Unit from 1975 to 1980 and then was a first grade teacher at the Boalsburg/Panorama Village Elementary School until her retirement in 2004. She was voted Teacher of the Year in June 1999 by State College magazine.

Lesta was a member of the Christian Missionary Alliance Church of State College for 38 years and chairwoman of the Christian Women's Club from 1975-1977. She enjoyed participating in Bible studies and was thankful for the promise of eternal life through her Savior, Jesus Christ.

After moving to Rocky Mount in 2004 her life revolved around her grandchildren, exercising at the Y, participating in Bible studies, and flower gardening. One of her greatest joys was teaching all three of her grandchildren to read and, with her husband, homeschooling their grandson for four years.

In Rocky Mount she was a member of Christ Covenant Church with many friends from Grace Reformed Church and First Baptist Church of Rocky Mount.

Mrs. Martin is survived by her husband of 54 years; her son Curtis Elliott Martin, his wife Kim, and their children Amelia, Isaac and Talula of Rocky Mount, N.C.; her daughter Krista Jean Martin of State College, Pa.; her son Kevin Samuel Martin; and sister Beverly Rae Catron of North Potomac, Md.

Donations in memory of Lesta Martin may be made to Harrison Family Y, 1000 Independent Drive. Rocky Mount NC 27804 or Christ Covenant Church, PO Box 8641 Rocky Mount, NC 27801.

A Funeral Service will be held on Tuesday, February 7, 2017 at 11:00 AM at Koch Funeral Home, 2401 S. Atherton Street, State College, PA. Visitation with the family will be one hour prior to the service.

Arrangements are under the care of Koch Funeral Home, State College. Online condolences and signing of the guest book may be made at www.kochfuneralhome.com.