James Arlo “Bolivar” Martin, age 79, of Charleston passed away July 17, 2020. He was born November 19, 1940 in Little Rock, AR to the late H.D. “Shorty” Martin and Maycel
(Stephens) Martin. In 1949 he and his family moved to Booneville and later in life he moved to Charleston.
He was a proud member of the Masonic Lodge 155, an avid hunter and fisherman, a huge fan of the Booneville Bearcats and Charleston Tigers but mostly importantly, he was a faithful member of the Cedar Grove Pentecostal Church.
Upon his retirement from Saint Scholastic the late Mayor Ray Baker proclaimed November 22 as James Martin Day in the City of Fort Smith in honor of his 22 years of service there.
He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife Sophia to whom is was married 38 years; and on May 7 , 2020 his sister Nadine Nick.
Left to cherish his memory are his stepsons Demus Shaw (Letha) of Charleston, Jerry Shelby of Branch, Ronnie Shelby and Billy Shelby both of Charleston, and his daughter Janice Shelby of Charleston; Two sisters Sue Martin of Booneville and Nan Holland of Hartford. Step grandchildren Avery Shaw, Angie Miller (Doug), Pippen Blankenship, Rachel Rings (James); step great grandchildren Gabby Avila, Kaylea Miller, Lily Miller, Cameron Rings, Emily Rings, and Ivy Rings. One niece Tammy Braddish and three nephews Shannon Cox, Jason Kats and Kyle Patton.
Viewing will be held Monday July 20, from 2 PM until 8 PM at Smith Mortuary in Charleston, AR. Online condolences may be at www.smithmortuaryinc.com. Graveside service will be held at 10 AM Tuesday, July 21 at Lowes Creek Cemetery near Peter Pender under the direction of Smith Mortuary. Rev. Calvin Johnson will officiate.
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