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James F. Martin Jr.

It is with great sadness that the friends of Mr. James (Jim) F. Martin announce his passing after a brief illness, on September 29, 2020, at the age of 93.

Jim passed away peacefully at his home in New Hope and will be lovingly remembered by his friends and neighbors.

At the age of 16, Jim joined the United States Navy, training at Sampson Naval Base, NY. He was stationed on the USS Santa Monica at the battle of Okinawawa, Japan, during WW2. He was then assigned to a destroyer that went to Shanghai. After two years in combat, he was decommissioned in San Diego CA.

He moved back to Trenton, NJ with his mother, Gret Barkin, where he attended art classes at Trenton Junior College of NJ.

In the 1950's he married and moved to Florida for a short time before moving back to New Hope, and divorcing after 2 years.

This is when his love of sculpting began. He apprenticed under the woodworker, George Nakashima, before going off on his own in 1963, and becoming the renowned artist and sculptor that New Hope knew and loved.

"Work is love made visual," he said of his carvings, which were suggested both by nature, and the life in the piece of walnut itself.

In New Hope, Jim was known to walk the streets with one of his many little dogs, delighting both the locals and the tourists.

He was a fixture in the hangouts and restaurants of New Hope, and on the benches of North Main St, where he shared his love with everyone around him.

Jim was truly a kind and compassionate man, and his many friends will miss him for his wit, his sincere friendship, and for his old-school gentlemanly ways.

He leaves behind his beloved dog, Coco, and countless friends.

There will be a military service at Washington Crossing National Cemetery in mid-to-late October.

"We thank you for your service to our country, Jim."


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  • Funeral Service

    Tuesday, October 20th
    11:30 AM

    Washington Crossing National Cemetery
    830 Highland Road
    Newtown, PA 18940

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