In memory: Robert Packard Martin

Robert Packard Martin (“RP” or “Bob”) was born November 11, 1920, in Roswell, New Mexico, to Merrill C. and Lillian Herring Martin. He passed away at the age of 94 on December 14, 2014, in Fort Collins where he had lived for nearly 60 years.

He is survived by his wife of 62 years, Lois Lucas Martin, his son Scott (Lisa) Martin, his daughter Elisabeth “Lisa” (Glen) Brozovich and his grandchildren Alyson Brozovich (Kyle) Williams, Melinda K. Martin and Lucas D. Martin.He was a graduate of Roswell High School in Roswell, NM, and also of Park College in Parkville, MO, as well as the University of Colorado. He earned a master’s degree from Colorado A&M (Colorado State University). While in Fort Collins he met and married Lois Lucas on June 28, 1952. They then moved to Salt Lake City where RP earned his PhD in biochemistry at the University of Utah with Dr. Leo Samuels. While there, their son Scott was born. The 3 Martins then traveled on the Queen Mary to Basel, Switzerland, in 1955 where Dr. Martin had a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Basel with Dr. Thaddeus Reichstein, Nobel Laureate. Daughter Elisabeth (Lisa) was born during their stay there. The family returned on the Queen Elizabeth and re-established residence in Fort Collins where Bob lived till the end of his life.robert martinBob was a biochemistry professor at CSU for more than 35 years. Steroid biochemistry was the main subject of his research. He enjoyed teaching and was quite demanding of his students including correcting their grammar on biochemistry essay questions. His true passion became advising for premedical students. He worked with others to develop a formal advising program which became Premedica. One of the most prized possessions that Bob loved to show visitors was his Distinguished Service Award for Undergraduate Advising. Many former students/advisees have kept in touch over the years and become an extended family. The family spent a year in the Boston area in 1964-65 while he took a year of sabbatical as a research associate at the Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital.Bob’s enlisted in the Army Air Corps in 1942 after having had flight training at Park College. He served stateside as a flight instructor as well as ferrying fighter planes across the United States. Especially in later years he loved telling stories and sharing photos from his flying days. He achieved the rank of 2nd Lieutenant and served in the reserves.

RPM were perfect initials for Bob as his brain, his body or both were always in motion at a high rate of RPMs (revolutions per minute). He had a sharp wit and loved puns as well as double entendres. After retirement he delved into theology and read as well as wrote about the life of Galileo. He gave occasional presentations at the Foothills Unitarian Church where he was an active member serving on the board and various committees. He helped oversee the enlargement and remodeling of the church in 1996. Community involvement included the Choice City Cycling Coalition, which helped the city develop biking policies and plans, the Fort Collins Clean Air Commission and lobbying to get the purchase of Soderberg Ranch on the ballot so that Horsetooth Mountain Park could be established.

Bob enjoyed spending time with his wife and children. They camped as a family and traveled all over the country by car to visit friends, family, natural and historic areas. RP also back packed before tents and packs were light weight and biked to work year round before the bike lanes were developed. He skied for over 50 years and granddaughter Alyson was his ski buddy in Breckenridge. In later years he loved watching both Melinda and Lucas play tennis for Fossil Ridge High School and in USTA tournaments. His yard and roses were a pride and joy, this kept him busy until he and Lois moved out of their long time home and into MacKenzie Place in 2012.

He will be greatly missed by friends and family.

A celebration of life will be held at 1:30 p.m. Saturday, March 28, at Foothills Unitarian Church in Fort Collins.
Memorial donations may be made through to CSU Premedica Scholarship Endowment or Crossroads Safehouse.