GREENVILLE - Barbara Martin, whose name is synonymous with politics, art, travel, genealogy and journalism, was recently laid to rest in Greenville Union Cemetery after a courageous battle with cancer.
Coming to Greenville in 1954 when she married the late Harry J. Martin, Barbara subsequently became a top name here, especially in the world of politics, as she served on the board of elections as a chair of the Darke County Republican Party and mentored aspiring politicians and advised them on their campaigns.
“Barbara was talented, respected, smart and helpful lady,” said Betty Grimes of Union City, Ohio. “She was a good friend I already miss. I think she fought a courageous battle with her illness and I never heard her complain. She did many good things in her lifetime. I talked to her so often, especially in the last few months. She was so upbeat.”
Jason Aslinger, the county’s probate/juvenile court judge, said he had known Martin for a long time.
“She was very knowledgeable about local politics,” he said. “She was a great adviser and was fiercely loyal to her friends. She was always ery excited when people she supported won an election.”
Aslinger said he had been pretty good friends with her, having attended a lot of meetings and seeing each other time and time again.
“When I really got to know her was when I ran for judge in 2005,” he said. “And, she helped me a lot.”
“I’ve known Barbara for years…I don’t know how many,” commented Darryl Mehaffie. “She was a good friend and I always cherished her take on the political world. She made a very strong county chairwoman. She knew how to work with the political world. I always liked to bounce things off her. She was supportive of our candidates and was behind the scenes pushing them to push the party forward.”
“Barb left a footprint that will never be forgotten,” commented Darke County Clerk of Court Cindy Pike.
“Barbara was a good artist until she became a Republican and quit painting,” Isabel Culbertson said.
Congressman John Boehner had this to say about Martin:
“Debbie and I offer our deepest condolences and prayers to Barb Martin’s friends and family as they mourn the recent passing of their loved one. Barb was a dear friend and supporter, and I know she will be greatly missed by those whose lives were touched by her friendship and guidance. She was a pillar of the Republican Party and a tireless advocate for Greenville and Darke County. So many elected officials looked to her for advice and support – including me. This is a true loss for our community, but our loss is Heaven’s gain.”