Martha Brooks Chamlee

April 6, 1928May 16, 2019

Mrs. Chamlee was born Martha Jo Brooks on April 6, 1928 in Charleston, IL.

She is survived by an identical twin sister, Mary Brooks Steere of Peoria, IL. and a younger sister, Bonnie Brooks Clark of Charleston, IL. She was preceded in death by her parents, Joseph and Jessie Taylor Brooks, sister Helen Brooks Coontz and an infant brother Larry. In 2011, her beloved husband of sixty one years, Roy Zebulon Chamlee, Jr. went to be with the Lord. Two years later, on Thanksgiving day, her eldest grandson, David B. Roten, Jr., a decorated Green Beret, was killed by enemy fire in Kabul, Afghanistan. He, too, is now with the Lord.

Martha was educated at Eastern Illinois University, in her home town, graduated from Moody Bible Institute in Chicago (where she met her husband), did further studies at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and Carver School of Missions in Louisville, KY., and studied Spanish at Escuela de Idiomas in San Jose, Costa Rica.

She and her husband served ten years with the Foreign Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention in Trujillo, Peru. Returning to the States, she was employed in the Library of International Finance Corporation of the World Bank in Washington, DC. She later worked at the Southern Baptist publishing house, The Sunday School Board (now Lifeway) in Nashville, TN, for which she also did some curriculum and devotional writing. She was later employed by the Development Office of the George Peabody College for Teachers in Nashville, TN.

Surviving Mrs. Chamlee are her children Roy Z. Chamlee III and his wife Mary Beth Lowe Chamlee of Greenville, SC.; Joseph B. Chamlee of Huntsville, AL. and Cynthia C. Chamlee of Fort Collins, CO.

She leaves seven grandchildren; Matthew Roten of GA.; Lisa Roten Lorbiecki (Nathan) of Greenville, SC.; Gregory Roten (Kasia) of Olive Hill, KY.; Laura Chamlee Debiasi (Marcus) of Hoover, AL.; Megan Chamlee Mills (Charles) of Hoover, AL.; Roy Z. Chamlee IV (Stephanie) of Nashville, TN. and Sarah Chamlee of Greenville, SC. Mrs. Chamlee was blessed with eleven great grandchildren.

A funeral service celebrating Mrs. Chamlee's life will be held Sunday May 19, 2019 at 2:00PM in The Chapel at Mackey at Woodlawn Memorial Park, 1 Pine Knoll Dr. Greenville, SC. Burial will follow the service in Woodlawn Memorial Park. A visitation with family will be from 1:00-2:00PM on the day of service at Mackey at Woodlawn Memorial Park.

Condolences to the family can be made at


  • Visitation Sunday, May 19, 2019
  • Funeral Service Sunday, May 19, 2019


Martha Brooks Chamlee

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Josephine Martinez

May 19, 2019

Hermana Chamlee touched my heart along with her husband Roy. It was a privilege to have met her and to have known her. I will always treasure my memories of her. To her children and grandchildren, you will miss her physical presence, but her heart goes on in you guys. Thank you for including us today (my husband Jesus [Chuy] and I, josie. May God continue to bless you all.

Lewis and Jo Lee

May 18, 2019

Martha and Roy Chamlee and their children have been some of our favorite people for many years. We have many wonderful memories: being received graciously by them in their home in Trujillo when we first arrived in Peru and on many other occasions. One time we were sitting at their table for dinner when Martha said to Roy, "Aren't you supposed to do your weekly Bible study on the radio tonight in just a few minutes?" She was right, of course. So Roy quickly picked up his Bible and he and Lewis got to the station with about a minute to spare. Martha helped keep him on time. Martha was a gracious hostess, inviting us to celebrate our first Christmas in Peru with them. This helped us not feel the distance from our family. Martha always greeted people with a smile and an attitude that reflected her love for the Lord, her family, and the people she served. She will be missed by all of us who had the privilege of knowing her.