Irene Haines Martin, 98, of Marietta, Georgia, died peacefully at home on April 5, 2019. She was born in Kirby, Pennsylvania, on October 26, 1920, to Ida M. (Johnson) and Ira D. Haines. She was the second of six children, all of whom are deceased.
Irene met her future husband, Donald B. Martin, when both were students at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, where she studied sociology. They married in 1948 and were together for 57 years until Don’s death in 2005. In 1955, the family moved to New Paltz, New York, where her husband accepted a position with IBM.
For over 20 years, Irene was employed as Director of the Haviland-Heidgerd Historical Collection at the Elting Memorial Library in New Paltz. She was always involved with activities at the Reformed Church and in the community. Along with her husband, Irene was a leader of the youth group at the church for several years. She was president of the New Paltz Garden Club, winning blue ribbons for her flower arranging skills. She was active in the League of Women Voters, board member of the Huguenot Historical Society, president of the LeFevre Family Association, and the New Paltz Town Historian. Irene was also a member of the Philanthropic Educational Organization (P.E.O.) in New Paltz, as well as in Marietta, Georgia. For over a decade, she was the director of the New Paltz branch of the New York City-based Herald-Tribune Fresh Air Fund, which brought inner-city children to New Paltz for a two-week summer vacation. Irene was an avid reader and never outgrew her love of Shakespeare and the New York Times.
She cherished her family and friends and enjoyed nothing more than preparing an elaborate meal for them on special occasions. For many years, she kept in touch by phone and mail with high school and college friends, even as their numbers dwindled.
Irene and Don relocated to Marietta, Georgia in 2003, to be closer to their children. She volunteered as a docent at the Marietta/Cobb Museum of Art, assisted in the afterschool program at the First Presbyterian Church, and was a board member for her condominium community, particularly with landscaping projects.
Irene is survived by her three children, Douglas (Cindy) of Sarasota, Florida, Tamara of Dallas, and Roderick of Marietta, as well as grandchildren Bailey Martin of Orlando, Florida, and Cameron Martin of Marietta. Her beloved granddaughter, Delaney Martin, preceded her in death in 2017.
A memorial service will be held at the First Presbyterian Church of Marietta, on Sunday, June 9, 2019 at 3 pm. A reception will follow at the church.
Gifts in Irene’s memory may be sent to the First Presbyterian Church, 189 Church Street, Marietta, Georgia, 30060, or the Marietta/Cobb Museum of Art, 30 Atlanta Street, Marietta, Georgia, 30060.