Martin, a Louisa native and longtime Patterson resident, passed away of natural causes just before noon Thursday at his home.
He served as St. Mary Parish assessor for 20 years after a long and successful career in the oil industry where he worked for Exxon and Texaco before retiring with McDermott as a controller for the Morgan City Field Operations.
In an interview just before his retirement at the end of 2008, Martin said he ran for assessor because it was “something that interested me, and I understood what I was getting into, since I provided consulting services for the sheriff on my own time. I also ran all the tax notices for the municipalities.”
As assessor, he modernized operations, implementing an updated computer system.
In 1990, he created a computerized mapping and Geographical Information System for the parish, which took 14 years to build to completion and bring to full operation.
It was one of the first for an assessor’s office and served as a guide for neighboring parishes building similar systems, according to a Jan. 5, 2009, Daily Review article.
“Without the cooperation of the parish government and municipalities, the computerized mapping-GIS system would never have become a reality,” Martin said before his retirement. “I am very grateful for their vision and willingness to work with our office. Moreover, I am keenly aware as to how crucial the staff was to the successes in the assessor’s office during my tenure. All of them met the challenge and worked to become competent in the new technology. Simply put, they are the best.”
In 2000 under his watch, a computerized mass appraisal system was installed and was used to value residential property, mobile homes and commercial buildings.
He said he decided not to seek re-election in 2008 because of health issues in recent years before he gave up the post.
He was replaced that fall when current assessor Jarrod Longman won the post.
Of his time as assessor, Martin said upon his retirement that the most rewarding thing was to say, “I’m finished. To know where we started and where we are today — it’s a lot.”
In addition to his work duties, Martin also was a U.S. Air Force veteran who had served during the Korean War.
His visitation will be observed Monday at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Patterson from 9:30 a.m. until 1 p.m. A Mass of Christian burial will be held Monday at 1 p.m. at the church. Burial will follow in the St. Joseph Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers the family asks that memorial donations be made to St. Joseph Catholic Church, 1011 First St., P.O. Box 219, Patterson, LA 70392.