Category Archives: Martin

Obituary for John Martin

Originally published in the Harrison Daily Times of Harrison, Arkansas.

John Martin

Oct. 29, 1934 – March 4, 2017

John MartinJohn Henry Martin[1], of Marble Falls, passed from this life on Saturday, March 4 (2017) at North Arkansas Regional Medical Center in Harrison. He was 82 years old. 

Visitation will be from 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, March 7, at Holt Memorial Chapel.

Funeral service will be at 10 a.m. Wednesday, March 8, at the Hasty Holiness Church. Pastor Dorvin Ricketts will officiate. Burial will be in Sexton Cemetery. Pallbearers will be his sons and grandsons. Honorary pallbearers are Dr. Tom Leslie and his staff. 

The son of Frank and Stella (Graham) Martin was born on Oct. 29, 1934, at Watts. 

John was a member of the Hasty Holiness Church and was a farmer. He married Ardith Reddell on April 14, 1956, in Harrison.

His parents; three sisters, Berniece Earwood, Emma Jean Davis and Matilda Martin; one brother, Kenneth Martin; and two great-grandsons preceded him in death. 

Survivors include his wife of 60 years, Ardith Martin, of the home; four sons, Darrell Martin and his wife Phyllis, of Yardelle, Derwin Martin and his wife Rhoda, of Everton, Dalton Martin, of Huntsville, and Dell Martin and his wife Karen, of Western Grove; 10 grandchildren, Becky, Robert, Melanie, Beth, Tye, Nathan, Brandon, Kim, Tim and Kendra; 17 great-grandchildren; one great-great-grandchild; one brother, Dalph Martin, of Hasty; one sister-in-law, Vinita Martin, of Couch, Missouri; and several other family and friends.


1. John shared his first and middle names with his mother’s father, John Henry Graham.


Harrison Daily Times.John Martin,” published on Monday, 6 March 2017. Retrieved on Friday, 16 June 2017.


Obituary for James Kenneth Martin

Originally published in the Harrison Daily Times of Harrison, Arkansas.

James Kenneth Martin

June 30, 1928 – Sept. 17, 2014

James Kenneth MartinJames Kenneth Martin was born the son of James Frank Martin and Stella Vione (Graham) Martin[1] on June 30, 1928, in Searcy County, and departed this life Wednesday, Sept. 17 (2014) at his home in Couch, Missouri, at the age of 86 years.

He was united in marriage on June 3, 1950, in Harrison, to Vinita Hancock.

He is survived by his wife of 64 years, Vinita Martin, of the home in Couch, Missouri; one son, Dwight Eric Martin and wife, Kimberly Ann, of Couch, Missouri; two grandsons, Blake Eric Martin and wife, Michelle, of West Plains, Missouri, and Derrick James Martin, of Springfield, Missouri; one great-granddaughter, Kylee Brooke Martin; one great-grandson, Wyatt Matthew Martin; two brothers, Dalph Martin of Hasty, and John Henry Martin and wife, Ardith, of Hasty; several nieces and nephews; other relatives; and many friends.    

He was preceded in death by his parents, Frank and Stella Martin; an infant son, Arlin Carroll Martin; and two sisters, Bernice Earwood and Imogene Davis.

Kenneth was a graduate of the Mt. Judea High School in Newton County, graduating with the class of 1948.

Farm life was Kenneth and Vinita’s way of life. They lived and raised their family in Hasty, for 33 years and continued the same farm tradition after moving to Couch. Through their dedication and Kenneth’s long hours and hard work on the farm, they developed a successful livestock and beef cattle farming operation.

Kenneth had strong Pentecostal faith, reading and studying his Bible, and attending Midway Pentecostal Church as long as his health permitted.

He will be remembered as a devoted family man, and was well respected by his family, friends, and the community in which he lived.

Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m. Friday, Sept. 19, at the Carter Funeral Home Chapel at Thayer, Missouri. Graveside services will follow at 3 p.m. Friday, Sept. 19, at the Holmes Cemetery near Bellefonte, with Brother Derwin Martin officiating.  

Arrangements are under the direction of Carter Funeral Home, Inc. in Thayer, Missouri.


[1] Stella Graham was the daughter of my great grandfather, John Henry Graham. That makes James my first cousin once removed.

In 1958, Kenneth served as a pallbearer at the funeral for his aunt, Callie Watts Graham, per her obituary.


Find A Grave. “James Kenneth Martin,” Memorial 136151373. Retrieved on Sunday, 28 December 2014.

Harrison Daily Times.James Kenneth Martin,” published September 2014. Retrieved on Sunday, 28 December 2014.

Thayer Carter Funeral Home. “James Kenneth Martin,” published 17 September 2014. Retrieved on Sunday, 28 December 2014.

Obituary for Bernice Martin

Obituary for Bernice Edna Martin from the Harrison Daily Times, 2004.

Edna Earwood

Edna Bernice Earwood[1], 79, of Harrison died Wednesday, Feb. 25 (2004) at North Arkansas Regional Medical Center in Harrison.

Funeral service will be at 10 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 28 at Christeson Funeral Home with Rev. Charles Christian and Rev. Derwin Martin officiating. Visitation will be from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, Feb. 27 at the funeral home. Burial will be in Mt. Judea Cemetery with grandsons and nephews serving as pallbearers.

The daughter of Frank and Stella Graham Martin[2] was born April 23, 1924[3] at Bear Creek in Searcy County. She was a prior resident of Mt. Judea. She was a devoted Christian and member of the Assembly of God Church, and was a homemaker and a loving, devoted wife and mother of ten children[4]. She enjoyed reading her Bible, growing flowers, quilting, and spending time with her children and grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Garlin Earwood[5]; a daughter, Evalene Smith; and a sister, Matilda Martin.

She is survived by six sons, Herman Earwood of Western Grove, Leon Earwood and Glen Earwood, both of Springfield, Mo., Bobby Earwood of Harrison, Paul Earwood of Russellville, and Tommy Earwood of Harrison; three daughters, Linda Carter, Kathy Redding and Robin Lane, all of Harrison; three brothers, Dalth Martin and John Martin, both of Hasty and Kenneth Martin of Mammoth Springs, Mo.; a sister, Emogene Davis of Vendor; 27 grandchildren; 36 great-grandchildren; eight great-great-grandchildren; and a host of nieces, nephews and friends who will mourn her passing.


[1] Records suggest the order of her names was Bernice Edna. The obituary appears to have flipped her first and middle names. To wit:

  • The 1930 census for Shady Grove Township, Searcy County, Arkansas enumerated her as “Martin, Bernice E.” which suggests that Edna was her middle name.
  • Similarly, the Social Security Death Index lists her as “Bernice E. Earwood.”
  • The 1940 census for Big Creek Township, Newton County, Arkansas, enumerated her as “Martin, Bernice.”
  • On her record of marriage to James Rhynes, she was “Bernice Martin.”
  • On her record of marriage to Garlin Earwood, she was “Bernice Rhynes.”

[2] Stella Viona Graham was the daughter of John Henry Graham and Mary Matilda Bohannon.

[3] The 1924 birth year is supported by most of the records except for one. At her marriage to James Rhynes on 28 April 1940, Bernice’s age was recorded as 18, which suggests one of two possibilities. One, that she was actually born in 1922, or two, she lied about her age. Being 16 in Arkansas in 1940, she would’ve needed her parent’s consent to marry James Rhynes, but if she were 18, consent wouldn’t be required. Did she elope with James?

[4] Bernice and James had one child together, Nona Evalene Rhynes, mentioned in the obituary as “Evalene Smith,” her married name. The other nine children were from Bernice’s second husband, Garlin Earwood.

[5] No mention at all of her first husband, James Rhynes. Bernice and Garlin Earwood were married on 2 July 1942, so James must have passed away by then. I haven’t yet found a record of his death.


Harrison Daily Times. “Edna Earwood,” published 29 February 2004. Retrieved 15 November 2013. 1930 United States Federal Census. Census Place: Shady Grove, Searcy, Arkansas; Roll: 89; Page: 1B; Enumeration District: 17; Image: 509.0. Retrieved 15 November 2013. 1940 United States Federal Census. Census Place: Big Creek, Newton, Arkansas; Roll: T627_158; Page: 1B; Enumeration District: 51-1. Retrieved 15 November 2013. Social Security Death Index. Name: Bernice E. Earwood; Death Date: 25 Feb 2004; Issue State: Arkansas ; Issue Date: 1973. Retrieved 15 November 2013. Arkansas County Marriages, 1837-1957. Film Number: 2020696; Digital Folder Number: 004331498; Image Number: 00078; Page Number: 622; Names: James Rhynes and Bernice Martin. Retrieved 15 November 2013. Arkansas County Marriages, 1837-1957. Film Number: 2026575; Digital Folder Number: 004331503; Image Number: 00483; Page Number: 500; Names: Garlin Earwood and Bernice Rhynes. Retrieved 15 November 2013.

Stella Viona Graham

The eighth child and fifth daughter of John and Tildy Graham was born on 16 June 1904 in Red River Township, Searcy County, Arkansas, and they named her Stella Viona Graham.

Stella was first recorded on the 1910 census at the age of six, living with both parents and her seven siblings on the family farm in Red River Township.

On the 1920 census Stella was 15, still living on the family farm with both parents, and with her sisters Emma and Nona, and her baby brother Daniel.  The occupation of mother Tildy and the children was recorded as “none”.

James Martin and Stella Graham marriage documents.On 22 April 1923, Mister James Franklin Martin, 20, of unincorporated Campbell in Searcy County, married Miss Stella Graham, 19, of unincorporated Watts, Searcy County.  The marriage was officiated by Justice of the Peace McKinley O’Neal.

One year later, the Martins welcomed their first child into the world.  Their daughter Bernice Edna Martin was born on 23 April 1924.

On 16 June 1925 their second daughter Clessie Emogene Martin was born.

Their son James K Martin was born circa 1928.

The 1930 census recorded that James, Stella, and the three children were living and working on a rented farm in Shady Grove Township, Searcy County.  The value of the home was given as $1,200.

At some point between 1930 and 1938, the Martin family moved to Newton County, Arkansas, which lies at the western border of Searcy County.

On 12 January 1938 their daughter Matilda E Martin was born, but she died just three days later, on 15 January.  She was interred at Mount Judea Cemetery in Newton County.

James Franklin was issued his Social Security number circa 1951 in Arkansas.

Stella was issued her Social Security number circa 1973 in Arkansas.

Stella died at the age of 70 on 18 December 1974 in Mount Judea, Newton County, Arkansas.  She was interred at Mount Judea Cemetery.

James Franklin died on his 73rd birthday, 6 May 1975 in Mount Judea, Newton County, Arkansas.  He was interred beside his wife at Mount Judea Cemetery.

Name Variations

James recorded as “J.F. Martin” on his marriage documents.

Bernice Edna listed as “Edna Bernice” on Find A Grave.


What is James K Martin’s full name and birth date?  What was Matilda’s middle name?  Were there any other children born to James and Stella?

Sources  United States Federal Census of 1910, 1920, and 1930;  Social Security Death IndexGrimes Family TreeHampton Family Tree.  Arkansas County Marriages, 1837 – 1957.

Find A Grave:  Memorial for James Franklin MartinMemorial for Stella V (Graham) MartinMemorial for Bernice Edna (Martin) EarwoodMemorial for Matilda E Martin.

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