Dr. Jack W. Martin Ph.D.
January 17, 1936 - June 10, 2022
Dr. Jack W. Martin ,Ph.D, passed away on June 10, 2022 in Wamego, KS. A devoted husband and father, Jack was married to Vicki Lynn Flesher Martin on August 6, 1961, who proceeded him in death on their 55th wedding anniversary in 2016, and together they had three children, Sharla, Kelly, and Justin.
Born on January 17, 1936 in Parsons, KS to Bert and Goldie Martin, Jackie Wayne Martin was the youngest of seven children. He had very fond memories of growing up in Parsons, enjoying friendships, playing baseball, and being doted on by his older siblings and their spouses. Baseball was a great passion in his youth and even beyond his 1954 graduation from Parsons High School. It was, however, his work as a psychiatric aid (beginning in 1957) and then eventually a clinical psychologist (1963-66), along with the guidance and encouragement of great mentors and colleagues, at the Parsons State Hospital and Training Center (PSH&TC) that inspired him to pursue further education in the field of psychology. Having earned a bachelor of science degree in industrial arts and psychology from Kansas State College of Pittsburg (Pittsburg State University) in 1961, he went on to receive a master’s degree in psychology from there as well, and then a Ph.D. from the University of Oregon in 1969.
Upon the completion of his doctorate, Jack and Vicki tossed their 4 year old and 9 day old daughters in the back seat of their car and drove back to their hometown of Parsons to raise their family and continue their careers. They proudly welcomed a son to the mix in 1975.
Jack spent his career working to build opportunities for those with special needs and those affected by mental health issues. He served as clinical director and clinical psychologist for the Southeast Kansas Mental Health Center in Humboldt, before joining the PSH&TC hospital staff as the chief psychologist in the outpatient center in 1970. In 1979, he was a key part of establishing the Labette Center for Mental Health Services, Inc. (LCMHS), and he served as the Administrator of LCMHS from 1979 until his retirement in 2002. After retirement, he served as a Labette County Commissioner from 2008-2016.
Jack truly valued his friends and connections in the Parsons community. Over the years he was locally a part of Wesley United Methodist Church, Parsons Country Club, Katy Golf Course, Parsons Rotary Club, Elks Club, and a pretty fabulous couples bridge group, as well as serving on numerous boards. He particularly loved coaching and “cheering” on his kids (and so many Parsons area kids) as well as supporting his children and grandchildren in whatever activity or passion they were pursuing.
Jack was an enthusiast of both the past and the present. His storytelling was full of life and his smooth talking, quick thinking, fun spirit made life full. His stories will live on through his family and friends. Our love for him will live on forever. Jack is survived by his children, Sharla (Dane) Ditto of Wamego, KS, Kelly (Spencer) Warren of Charlotte ,NC/Tampa, FL, and Justin Martin of Chetopa, KS; 12 grandchildren, Connor Ditto, Keegan (Mollie) Ditto, Campbell (Jacob) Moldrup, Kiel Ditto, Bard Ditto, Maja Ditto, Jackson (Audrey) Phillips, Max Phillips, Savannah Warren, Sebastian Warren, Tayiah (Drew) Benton, and Chloe Martin; 5 great grandchildren, Skylar, Elli, Brayden, Violet, and Riley; along with numerous nieces and nephews.
He was proceeded in death by his wife, Vicki; his parents, Bert and Goldie Martin, his siblings and brothers/sister-in-law, Ruth (Chubby) Wilkinson, Bill (Gladys) Martin, Mary (Jack) Johnson, Ruby (Milton) Elliott, Betty Horton, Katherine (Walter Lee) Littlejohn and John Flesher, and five nephews.
A Celebration of Life will be held the afternoon of August 20th, with details to come on wallfuneralservices.com and in the Parsons Sun and Labette Avenue. Memorials are suggested to the Parsons Area Community Foundation to benefit girls’ softball programs and can be sent to Carson-Wall Funeral Home at PO Box 942, Parsons, KS 67357, or sent directly to Parsons Area Community Foundation at PO Box 894, Parsons, KS 67357. Online messages may be left at www.wallfuneralservices.com.
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