Marie (Mary) Philomina Martinez

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Marie (Mary) Philomina Martinez

Marie (Mary) Philomina Martinez Marie Martinez was born on June 13, 1936 in Tipperary, Ireland to John (Jack) and Johanna McGrath Byrne. On the 22nd of November 2018, she went home to be with our Lord.
Known to her family as May, she and her family lived in Ireland until she was about 10 years old. They moved to London, England where she would live until she was 20 years of age. May worked for the local Singers establishment and like her mum became a gifted seamstress. In a serendipitous event, she was in the company of one of her dear friends when she met a young soldier from the United States who was stationed in Germany and on leave with another soldier. The young soldier was Samuel Martinez of Huntsville, Texas. Quite smitten with his newfound love, Sam would correspond with May for nearly a year before he was able to woo her into being his bride and move to the United States. On April 14, 1957, Sam and Marie (her name she acquired after moving to Texas) were joined in marriage at the First Baptist Church of Huntsville, Texas.
In May of 1958, they began their family when they welcomed Steven, followed by Cheril, Pam and Don. Marie spent the early years of their lives as a housewife and caretaker of the family. Blessed with the ability as an excellent seamstress, Marie was an excellent cook and baker for her little family. Yearning for more, Marie would eventually join the ranks of the workforce by working as a waitress until she found the community where she would thrive at the Sam Houston State University Library. There, Marie not only excelled in her work, she also created bonds that would last a lifetime with the staff, faculty and student.
Marie would leave the university for a short period when she and Sam opened a restaurant in Groveton, Texas for two years. When they returned to Huntsville, it would not be long before Marie was back at the place she loved - the university library.
Many students were welcomed into the Martinez home through the years at the blessing of Marie and Sam. Marie would embrace those who needed the greatest support especially students who were here studying abroad. She understood all too well the hardship they endured in separating from their family to achieve their goals in life.
As Sam and Marie felt the empty nest syndrome settling in, they decided they would not be left sitting in sorrow at their home. Instead, the two threw themselves wholeheartedly into those areas which they felt needed them the most. Marie could be found regularly providing her delicious cakes for the catholic bazaar auctions. While Sam helped the Knights of Columbus prepare his infamous chicken fried steak, Marie could be counted on to provide a decadent dessert for the evening. She and Sam would also spend endless hours preparing packages to be sent to soldiers in active duty. Marie would delight in her opportunity to quilt each Wednesday at the Hearts Museum with her friends.
While most recognized her gifts of sewing and cooking, her truest gift was that of a loving and gifted nurturer. She cared for her husband and family even though she began battling cancer in 1989. Despite her own recurrence of cancer in 2014 and again in 2017, she remained steadfast as the primary caretaker of Sam through it all. Marie will be remembered for her dynamic smile that would light up the room and the love she held for her family and friends.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Samuel; parents Jack and Josie; sister, June, brothers, Jim, Vincent and Ned, and daughter, Cheril Ann. She is survived by her son, Steven J. Martinez and Dale of Burien, Washington; daughter, Pamela S. Baggett and Bruce of Huntsville, Texas; son, Don R. Martinez and Deborah of Huntsville, Texas; brother, Nial Byrne of London, England; sister, Pamela Allday and Maurice of London, England; grandchildren, Seth Lewis, Brandon and Dawyn Martinez, Jantz Martinez, Zane Baggett, Brys Baggett and Michelle Shriver, Forbes Baggett, Lexus Baggett and Tyler Fletcher, and Byrne Baggett; great-grandchildren, Kinleigh Brae Baggett, Ethan Martinez, Ella Milan Baggett, Rowan Baggett, Braxton Baggett as well as numerous nieces, nephews and cousins from around the world.
A memorial Mass will be held at St. Thomas Catholic Church, 1323 16thStreet, Huntsville, Texas on Friday, December 7, 2018 at 11:00 am.
Published on November 30, 2018
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