SHREVEPORT, LA - An American Hero, Charles S. Martin, Jr. "Your Peaceful Warrior," went to be with the Lord on Wednesday, July 11, 2007.
Mr. Martin was one of eleven children born to Charles S. and Katherine Lucas Martin. He was born May 14, 1921 in La Junta, Colorado. His family moved to Shreveport in 1926 where he grew up and made his home in the Ingleside area. A WW II Army veteran, Aircraft Mechanic, Auto Mechanic, Paint Contractor and Political Activist, Charles touched the lives of numerous people.
Charles served as a radio operator and took classified calls while in the Army during WW II. He was a member of B Company, 62nd Signal Battalion. While on a mission off the coast of Florida, in the Atlantic Ocean, he was wounded when a German U-Boat attacked the ship he was on. Charles received the Purple Heart, Military Merit, Good Conduct, and numerous other awards. After being discharged from the Army, he worked as an Aircraft Mechanic at Barksdale Field and then went on to work as an Auto Mechanic for Brocks Auto. Charles started painting with his dad and brothers out of the back of their Ingleside home. He then went into business with his brothers to form Martin's Specialty Coatings. Charles worked as a Paint Contractor until he eventually retired in 1985.
Charles continued to actively serve his country by educating people on the laws, the Constitution, and his conservative Christian beliefs. He spoke all over the country, campaigned and ran for many offices, and drew up many petitions to support the causes his heart and soul compassionately believed in.
Charles was the founder and President of the National Petitioning Committee for Constitutional Government. He received the Young Americans for Freedom Award for this committee. In the 60's he obtained an estimated 12 million signatures for the purpose of impeaching U. S. Supreme Court Justices and High Ranking Officials of the Justice department. He was a life-member of the VFW Post 2238 and chapter 30 of the DAV. He was a member of the American Executive Committee for Caddo Parish. Charles was awarded State of Louisiana Honorary Attorney General by the State of Louisiana Department of Justice May 18, 1956 and again April 7, 1960. He was honored for Outstanding Patriotism to God and Country March 28, 1960. Charles was given the key to the City of New Orleans and awarded Honorary Citizen of New Orleans Louisiana by the mayor in 1967. He was awarded State of Louisiana Honorary Secretary of State on May 13, 1985 under James H. "Jim" Brown. For many years one of his most important passions was his ongoing fight to "stop abortion dead in its tracks." He had an abundance of compassion for the lives of unborn babies and filed a bill to stop the decision made in Roe vs. Wade.
Charles Martin lit up the room wherever he was. He had a warm smile, a kind and compassionate heart, and an undying passion for all he believed in. He loved playing his harmonica, he wrote and composed many songs and all of his family and friends looked forward to hearing his sweet, sweet music. He went to nursing homes to play his harmonica and bring fellowship and cheer to other people. Gardening was one of his favorite hobbies. He planted many beautiful flowers and plants and grew vegetables to eat and share with friends and family. You always left his house with something he had to give you. He taught his grandchildren and great-grandchildren how to play his "harp," pick veggies, plant flowers, build, and love with everything you have. Charles had a God-given talent for creating and inventing new ideas. He designed and built his own home security system and many other electronic devices. Charles loved fishing and spending leisure time at his daughter's camp on Caddo Lake. What he really loved was just talking to people and anyone who listened was his friend. He was a treasure to his family, friends, and this world.
The family requests that memorials be made to The Crisis Pregnancy Center to continue Charles Martin's life long battle against abortion.
"Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves; ensure justice for those who are perishing." Proverbs 31:8
The family would like to express their sincere thanks to Detectives Bowen, Johnson, and McConnell and the Shreveport Police Department.
"You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to
accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives."
Flower beds in a superbly manicured yard, a one-owner 1965 Nash station wagon and a pile of correspondence await attention at Charles Martin's manufactured home on Watts Road in southwest Shreveport. But they won't enjoy Martin's gentle attention any more: The 86-year-old war veteran, inventor and political activist was victim of a robbery and homicide Wednesday July 11th, 2007. Martin was reported missing on Wednesday when family members concerned about being unable to reach him went to his home and found him and his car gone. His car was found on Thursday; his body was discovered late the same day in a rural part of Caddo Parish.
"He got up early and he worked to dusk, and he was strong enough to whup me," namesake grandson Martin Grau said as relatives gathered at Mr Martin's Home the day after the arrest. "That's why he was 86. Every time he left my house in his car, he peeled out. That's why I know he put up a fight."
Authorities arrested Shreveporters Beverly Suzette Arthur and Eric Dale Mickelson, both 38, each on one count of first-degree murder. Investigators linked Beverly Arthur and Eric Mickelson to the case by interviewing those who knew Martin. Arthur, of the 3800 block of Torento Lane in the South Park area, and Martin were friends. When detectives went to her home, they found his 2002 Chrysler 300M in her driveway. Detectives determined through interviews that Arthur and her friend Mickelson killed Martin and dumped his body somewhere outside Shreveport in Caddo, said Shreveport police spokeswoman Kacee Hargrave. She would not say what led investigators to that conclusion. Nor would police say where Martin's body was found or what condition it was in. And they have shared few other details. Police still are trying to determine a motive, Hargrave said. There were no signs of forced entry at Martin's home.
According to entries in the Caddo and Bossier clerks of court offices, Mickelson and Arthur have lengthy criminal histories, but their offenses up to now have officially been nonviolent or drug-related. Between 1995 and 2007, Arthur was booked into Caddo Correctional Center 10 times, including a June arrest for unauthorized use of a motor vehicle and forgery, said Caddo sheriff's spokeswoman Cindy Chadwick. Mickelson has five bookings from 1997 to 2006 in Caddo and others in Bossier Parish.
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