OBITUARY

Raymond J Martin

March 13, 1925March 7, 2013

MARTIN, Raymond J., 87, longtime resident of Norwood, Thursday, March 07, 2013.

Raymond, was born in Norwood, March 13, 1925, the son of James and Winifred Martin. He was the beloved husband of the late Claire (Canniff) Martin, who passed on December 5, 2008 and the loving father of the late Susan France, who passed away on January 27, 2013. He was dearly loved by his niece, Barbara Kearney and her husband Paul of Brewster, their daughter Kathleen Rocuant of Estero, FL and her children Rebecca and Ryan, and their son Paul Kearney and his children Jessica and Sarah of Plymouth, as well as several dear friends.

Ray graduated from Norwood High School with the class of 1943, where he was one of its greatest 3 sport athletes, lettering in football, ice-hockey, and his favorite sport, baseball. It was as a baseball pitcher that he made his greatest impact at Norwood High, the “School on the Hill,” where he set many records for strikeouts. His senior year culminated in a 3-2 victory over Dalton High at Fenway Park as Norwood clinched the state baseball championship. After the game, he signed with Major League Baseball’s Boston Braves and was immediately placed on the roster and pitched in his first game a week later. It was a one inning stint and he retired the side in order.

Six weeks after his Major League debut in 1943, he entered the Army Air Corps in New Hampshire until 1944 when he was sent for more training before joining General Patton's troops in the European offensive, under General Omar Bradley during WWII . Ray fought at the Battle of Remagen, which became the basis of the movie "A Bridge Too Far." "We had about 2 minutes to move across that bridge in between artillery attacks from the Germans. They said I wasn't a real fast runner but you find a second gear when someone is shooting at you,” Ray said. His unit fought all the way until they met the Russian army. The Russians were puzzled that the unit was still fighting. The war had ended days before but no official word had gotten to them.

Ray returned to professional baseball on his return from the war , pitching for Hartford in the Eastern League; Milwaukee in the American Association and Seattle in the Pacific Coast League. He finished up with Atlanta in the Southern League. He pitched a 2-1 victory in 1947 in a major league start against the Dodgers. He went the distance to gain his only major league win. He was one of the last surviving members of the 1948 Braves team that made it to the World Series.

He was employed by the Picker Corporation as a salesperson for the installation of x-ray machines and diagnostic equipment for hospitals and medical facilities. He was an avid golfer, joined the Walpole Country Club shortly after retiring from the Braves organization and maintained his membership through his retirement years. Ray was active in coaching Norwood youth sports , including Youth hockey in the early 1960’s. He always remained a strong supporter of Youth Hockey.

Funeral services will be held on Monday, March 11 at 8:00 AM from the Gillooly Funeral Home, 126 Walpole Street (Rte. 1A), Norwood, followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at 9:00 AM in St. Catherine of Siena Church, 547 Washington Street, Norwood. Interment will follow the Mass in Highland Cemetery, Norwood. Relatives and friends are invited and may call at the funeral home on Sunday, March 10 from 2:00-4:00 PM.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Friends of Norwood Hockey, PO Box 308, Norwood, MA 02062.

Services

  • Visitation Sunday, March 10, 2013
  • Funeral Service Monday, March 11, 2013
REMEMBERING

Raymond J Martin

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Jim Delbou

March 15, 2013

Ray, I will always cherish the time we spent talking Baseball with you, especially during our run @ Three straight State Legion Titles. You were one of our biggest fans during the mid eighties. I always looked up to you, not only as an athlete but as a wonderful man. I still have the "Nellie Fox" bat you gave me during that time. I hope we meet again Sir on the other side.....

Ted Curtin

March 14, 2013

Lorraine Shamon

March 11, 2013

A true genteman. You will be missed.

Lorraine Shamon

David Martin

March 11, 2013

I caddied for Ray many times at Walpole CC. He was truly a gentleman and a first class guy. I'm honored to have known him. He was certainly a positive role model for the caddies.

God Bless,

David Martin

Ted Curtin

March 11, 2013

So long, Ray, dear old pal of all our school years together. You were always a straight arrow, one of those few who can truly be called a gentle man. Looking back fondly on those simpler days, when we had such a good year at St. Catherine's with your namesake, Sister Raymondine.

Rest in peace, Ray, you've earned it.

Rex Hamann

March 8, 2013

I would have enjoyed listening to your stories of playing baseball with the old Milwaukee Brewers. Now we'll just have to be content to read about your fine career in baseball!

danielle quaranta

March 8, 2013

You will be sadly missed here at the charlwell house!

FROM THE FAMILY