Date of death: 6/5/2006
Saint Meinrad Class: O 1956
Msgr. William Martin was born August 10, 1929 in Ft. Wayne, Indiana and raised there on the east side of town. His parents were William F. Martin and Lucille C. Kintz. William was the oldest of six children: Barbara, James, who died in 1957, Darlene, Donna and Richard. He studied for the priesthood at Sacred Heart Seminary, Our Lady of the Lake Seminary and Saint Meinrad, and was ordained in Ft. Wayne at the cathedral on May 26, 1956. Fr. Bill served as associate pastor at St. Peter’s in Laporte 1956-59. Early assignments as pastor took him to the inner city serving at St. Luke, St. Monica and later Sts. Monica and Luke, all in Gary, for 26 years. His final pastorate was at The Holy Name of Jesus Parish Community from 1985 until his retirement in 1999. Fr. Martin was very active in the youth apostolate during most of his priesthood. He was director of Catholic Youth Organization and Catholic Young Adults in St. Peter’s in Laporte and Director of the Gary Diocese CYO and Camp Lawrence until 1985. Fr. Bill was the founder and director of the Permanent Diaconate Program in the Diocese as well as service on the Priests’ Personnel Board, and the Priests’ Senate, including a term as president in 1984-85. He was Priestly Life Coordinator for the Diocese for six years. He was a member of St. Thomas K of C Council #1347 and the Abraham Lincoln Assembly 4th Degree.Fr. Bill was ordained shortly before the split of the diocese of Fort Wayne, South Bend and Gary, and continued his work in youth ministry during the time of transition. In 1984, Fr. Bill was named a Monsignor by Bishop Grutka in recognition of his work in the Diocese. In 1984, Fr. Bill underwent multiple by-pass surgery after a heart attack.Following his retirement in 1999, he continued to work in prison ministry, as a board member of the Drexel Foundation and he continued to meet a priestly support group that he had been with for 32 years. On May 28, 2006 Fr. Bill celebrated his 50th Anniversary of Ordination at Queen of All Saints Church in Michigan City with his fellow priests and hundred of friends. For several years, along with many other priests and religious, he participated in an Alzheimer’s study for Rush Medical Center,which included a brain autopsy following his death. An avid reader, Father Bill embraced the changes of Vatican II, mentoring seminarians and parishioners and attending numerous conferences and workshops. He will be sorely missed by hundreds of friends as well as his large family. Fr. Bill is survived by sisters: Barbara (Bob) Garrett, Darlene (Jim) Stapleton, Donna (Dave) Hawthorne; brother, Dick (Rosie) Martin; as well as numerous nieces and nephews.Information obtained from www.nwitimes.com on 6/13/06.