Obituary Details

Garland "Duke" Sperow Martin

(11/26/1928 - 02/04/2015)
Courtesy of The Lusk Herald, 02/11/2015

Garland Sperow "Duke" Martin, local banker and businessman, passed peacefully away Wednesday morning February 4, 2015. He was born in 1928 in Martinsburg West Virginia to Charles and Willy Love Martin. He was preceded in death by his brothers Earl, Harrell, Harry, Helen and Charles Jr. and his loving wife Patricia I. Martin. Patricia passed away in March of 2001.

Surviving are his son and daughter, G. Steven Martin and Susan Garrett, Steven's wife Neile Grady Martin and Susan's husband Robbie Garrett. Grandchildren Kelly Wilt and husband Bradley, Leslie LeHew and husband Tim, granddaughters Maggie and Emma Martin, great-grandchildren Gracey and Logan Wilt and Garrett and Quentin LeHew. Additional survivors include a wide number of nieces and nephews.

Garland grew up during the Depression and he and his brothers would occasionally "liberate" sacks of potatoes from the boxcars parked in the rail yard near his home so the family could eat. The family had some horses and Garland learned to play polo riding bareback on a grassy airstrip north of Martinsburg. As a young adult, he went to work for the railroad as a" Fireman" (the guy who shovels coal into the fire to heat the boiler of the locomotive).

When WWII broke out Garland S. Martin, like many men, enlisted in the United States Army. As a Technical Sergeant he served under General Dwight D. Eisenhower in Italy coordinating troop and train movement.

After returning home to Martinsburg, he continued working for the railroad. He met his loving wife, Patricia I. Martin, in the early 1950s. Around that same time Garland enlisted in the West Virginia State Police and was stationed in Huntington, WV.

After serving as state trooper he went to work for the Old National Bank as a "collections officer". Remember that was the 1950s so "collections" was a little different then than now. During his interview, phrases like 'we need someone who's not afraid to get their hands dirty" could be heard. He did well in the banking industry and The Old National Bank sent him to banking School at the University of Virginia. He advanced in the banking industry and after twenty five years eventually retired as the Vice President of Consumer Lending.

In the 1980s, after retiring from banking Garland Martin started Martins Mobile Home and Housing, a thriving business that specialized in mobile, modular and manufactured homes. That business closed but in 1997 he built Tabler's Station Airport Self-Storage and Car Wash; a 324 unit self-storage facility and a 4 self bays and automatic car wash. He still owns the car wash component of that business and up until very recently could be found tending to the daily car wash duties of sweeping up pieces of trash and cleaning the self-bays.

Garland loved to hunt. First, hunting whitetail deer and black bear in the mountains of West Virginia and Virginia. In the mid 1970s he and his family began yearly expeditions to Wyoming to hunt antelope and mule deer. Garland loved the wide open spaces of Wyoming and quickly made friends with many of the ranchers that he met there. He began to acquire ranch land over the years so family and friends could continue to enjoy that beautiful country not only during hunting season but year round.

During the 1990's Garland and Patricia Martin traveled extensively together to Wyoming vacationing for a month or two and would regularly attend the Cheyenne Frontier Days Rodeo.

He would always greet you with a smile and a hand shake and if you were really lucky he might share one of his many adventures with you. He will be missed.

Family will receive friends on Friday, February 6, 2015 from 6:00PM to 8:00PM at the Brown Funeral Home South Berkeley Chapel in Inwood.

Funeral service will be held on Saturday, February 7, 2015 at 11:00AM at the funeral chapel with Pastor Chris Johnson officiating. Military graveside will be in Rosedale Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be made to UVA Health Foundation, Support the Transplant Patient Assistance Fund, PO Box 800773, Charlottesville, VA 22908-0773

Online condolences may be offered at

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Related/Linked Records

Record Type Name
Obituary Martin, Patricia (05/20/1931 - 03/15/2001) View Record