Helen Elizabeth Martin
San Antonio - 10/30/1929-4/1/2021
Helen Elizabeth Martin died peacefully April 1, 2021, in San Antonio, TX. She was 91.
Helen was beautiful, charming, and intelligent. She loved to read good books, eat delicious meals, and engage in clever conversations. Martinis in hand and Sinatra in the background brought her much pleasure with good friends. While she enjoyed living in Texas, she relished traveling stateside and overseas, keeping detailed journals of each adventure. And she imparted her fondness for animals and nature to her children.
She made friends easily and was especially close to Betty Grant, Mib Garrard, Jean Pinelli, and Naoma Hickie, as well as her best friend since age 7 in Scotland, Margaret Reid Shalliday. Helen led a very active life. A founding member of the Stephenville Women's Golf Assoc., she played golf her entire life, carding two holes in one. She was a Cub Scout den mother and with her friend Barbara Terrell she was a Girl Scout troop leader. And she hosted countless cocktail parties, dinners, & celebrations.
She served her community in many positions, including on the planning & zoning commission, appraisal district board, Bosque River advisory commission, fine arts council, women's political caucus, and as project director of multiple counties' federally funded nutrition programs for seniors. She was twice elected to the Stephenville City Council and served as mayor pro-tem. Gov. Ann Richards appointed Helen to the Brazos River Authority, where she served on the board of directors for six years. Helen was recognized as Erath County Woman of the Year in 1982.
Born October 30, 1929, in Perth, Scotland to George & Lillian Mackenzie, she grew up in Musselburgh where she attended public school, was captain of the girls' field hockey team, and was valedictorian of her class. Growing up during WWII, she experienced nightly blackouts and was required to carry a gas mask to school. Helen attended the University of Edinburgh, where she met her future husband, William B. Martin from Texas. They married July 10, 1950, in Prestonpans, Scotland and moved to Texas in the early 1950s, settling in Stephenville in 1956. She had a son and a daughter, Bruce & Lesley.
Helen is survived by her son Bruce Mackenzie Martin & his wife Barbara Cheaney of San Antonio. She is also survived by her nieces Margaret Culbertson of Houston and Kaye Culbertson Fuller and her husband Roger of Paige, TX. In Scotland, she is survived by her cousins Ian Taylor, Graham Taylor, Anthony Taylor, Douglas Colville, and Graeme Colville. Helen was predeceased by her husband Bill and daughter Lesley.
Helen received superior care in recent years from many individuals. The family expresses their deep gratitude to the following persons who each distinguished themselves via their extraordinary, excellent care.
In Stephenville, TX: Chrystal Westmoreland, Jeanna Groves, Lucy Onsarigo, and Dr. Jeffrey Moore.
In San Antonio, TX: Natasha Suarez, Callie Novosad, Marie Deats, Lasan Newton, Brian Griffith, Isabel Garces, Irma Botello, Laurianna Somonte, Linda Duran, Joanne Avila, and Pam Ramsey.
Memorial gifts may be sent to the William B. Martin Award for Writing Excellence, c/o Tarleton State University, Office of Development, PO Box T-0415, Stephenville, TX 76402.
Posted online on May 15, 2021