Martin, Shirley Grace
Martin, Shirley Grace
November 10, 1924 — September 19, 2018
Shirley Grace Martin, daughter of Gray and Helen Hickman, sister to six, wife, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother started her life in Lineville, Iowa on November 10, 1924. Her early years were influenced by the hard times of the Great Depression; her family moved about while her father traveled to find employment. At times Shirley lived with her granddad, briefly attended a one room school house and finally arrived in Wyandotte County Kansas in the 1930’s. Shirley’s school years found her at Abbot Grade School and Wyandotte High. Her favorite teacher, Miss Longenecker, always wore Channel No. 5 perfume. This became the only perfume she wore as an adult.
Like many of her generation, World War II became a turning point in Shirley’s life. In 1943, while working at the Katz Drug Store in downtown Kansas City, Missouri Shirley had a chance encounter with a young sailor, Warren G. “Jack” Martin, home on leave from the war. World War II made for short romances. Jack and Shirley exchanged photos and saw each other less than five times during the next twelve months. Their 61-year marriage took place on December 30, 1944.
The newlyweds started their married life in Kansas City, Kansas and eventually bought their first home in South Kansas City. While Jack pursued his career with the Clark Lift company, Shirley kept busy caring for her daughter Tanya and son Derace.
Jack and Shirley helped start Santa Fe Hills Baptist Church in South KC and were charter members. On Wednesdays when attending Abbot Grade School, the whole class lined up and walked to the Baptist Church for Bible class. She like going there but her favorite part was getting to yell along the way. While being a Baptist was in her blood she also enjoyed going to the Pentecostal Church as a child. Her love of Jesus carried over to the many years she taught Sunday School to young children. She especially enjoyed handcrafts as a well of telling Bible stories.
Shirley loved her various jobs throughout her life. Customer service was her specialty; she touched the lives of many people.
The Clark Lift Company enabled Shirley and Jack to travel extensively. Their trips took them to the Greek Islands and several countries in Europe.
Granddaughter HayleyWoods: This lady taught me how to bake, how to serve in the church, how to play the slots in Vegas, how to ring in the New Year, how to care for others, how to hide cash in random places, how to make the best cheese cake around, and just how to love life. She gave her Sunday afternoons to us for years and spoiled us every single week. I hope one day I can be as fun as her with my own grandkids.
Nephew Bill Hickman: Growing up the best two moms a guy could have were his Grandma Hickman and his Aunt Grace. Aunt Grace always had the upper hand with me. Anytime I wanted to spend money, she would tell me, “A fool with his money is soon parted”, a lesson still remembered. I use the same quote with my son, then I think I’ve turned into my Aunt Grace. . .Growing up she would always send me ginger snap cookies when I was in college. I looked forward to the care packages as did my roommate. Then she continued the cookieswhile I was in the military. I can’t express how much those cookies impacted my life. Even after I was married she would send me ginger snaps in a coffee can. My wife would call me and say aunt Grace sent you something.
Granddaughter Andrea Martin: Memories. . . . . Sunday afternoon dinners, annual Easter egg hunts, Christmas morning brunch, birthday dinners, and back-to-school shopping at JC Penney. Bi-weekly visits to see Great Grandma Hickman. Care packages that made you feel like you were at home, even though you were 400 miles away at college.
Brother Larry Hickman: Shirley Grace Martin was a sweetheart. Grace and I were always close. Life and miles made our visits few, but the love was always there. The times I was able to see her were always enjoyable. Here steadfast, demanding persistency in our mother’s carewas remarkable. I’ll always miss you Grace. The sorrow we will feel is for your absence. You are off on a new life. You will be missed big sis! Thanks for being a part of the fiber of my life.
Shirley was preceded in death by her husband Jack, her son Derace, her parents and five siblings. She is survived by her brother Larry Hickman, daughter Tanya Salyer (Larry), granddaughters Andrea Martin and Hayley Woods (Justin), and great grandchildren Austin Wyble, Hayden and Kenzie Woods. In lieu of flowers, the family requests contributions to The Disabled American Veterans: DAV, 9700 Page Ave Suite 101, Rm 1-096, St. Louis, MO 63132
Service: 11:30AM, Saturday, November 10, 2018 at Park Lawn Funeral Home
Visitation: 10-11:30AM, Saturday, November 10, 2018 at Park Lawn Funeral Home
Burial in Memorial Park Cemetery