Tennyson “Tenny” Martin, 83, of Jonestown, passed away peacefully on October 16, 2019, and began his journey into eternal life. He was preceded in death by his wife of 52 years, Alice Grace (Light) Martin, 71, with whom he had raised a family and carved out his niche in the world.
Born on April 9, 1936, in Lockport, NY, and raised in Clarence Center, NY, Tenny was the son of the late Vernon and Elsie (O’Diam) Martin. His parents nurtured a love of music that continued throughout his life. In addition to playing the trumpet in school, Tenny also enjoyed singing harmony with his finely tuned tenor and baritone voice. He attended Messiah Academy in Grantham and graduated in 1954. As a graduation gift, his parents gave Tenny an Argus C3 camera, which fueled his lifelong interest in photography. Some of the first pictures he took on that camera were of Dwight D. Eisenhower during a 1956 Presidential campaign parade in Harrisburg. After Messiah Academy, Tenny served the country by working at the Lancaster General Hospital under the 1-W Selective Service classification. The city boy named Tennyson was then called to a country life of farming and raising a family in the green acres of Lebanon County. Together with his wife and children, Tenny attended Fairland Brethren in Christ Church, Cleona, where he sang in a male gospel quartet as well as the church choir. Later, they attended New Hope Brethren in Christ Church, Harrisburg, where he also vocalized his love of the teachings of Jesus in the choir. Most recently, Tenny sang with the Jonestown Male Chorus (jonestownmalechorus.org).
Tennyson was a farmer for most of his life, and he especially loved to till the soil and enjoy nature. Up until the end, he kept busy digging potatoes, picking beans, and harvesting other crops in his expansive garden. When he took time off, Tenny loved to travel. Most recently, he fulfilled a dream and visited Israel to see all the sites where Jesus walked only 2,000 years ago. Above all those worldly accomplishments, we saw in our kind father and grandfather a strong man of faith who believed in the power of prayer. His humble actions spoke much louder than any words could have, and he showed us all how to live a good, honorable life. For our father’s shining example, we are all thankful.
Surviving are his four sons Douglas T. Martin of Sun City, AZ, David L. Martin husband of Louise of Desert Hot Springs, CA, Donald J. Martin of Jonestown, and Dwight P. Martin husband of Karen also of Jonestown. In addition, there are grandchildren, including Gretchen, Jamie, Jessica, Jeremy, Preston, & Christina; and great grandchildren Gavin, Bentley, Aubreigh Jo, Madison, Kelsey & Calieb; and several nieces, nephews, great nieces, and great nephews, all of whom Tenny adored.
A viewing will be held on Monday, October 21, 2019, at 10:00 a.m. until the start of the service at 11:00 a.m. at Kreamer & Lum Funeral Home & Crematory, Rt. 72 & Camp Meeting Rd., Jonestown. Interment will follow at Kochenderfer’s Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in Tennyson’s name may be made to
the New Hope BIC Church, 584 Colonial Club Dr., Harrisburg, PA 17112.