Tommie Martin

Tommie Martin

You’ve probably seen photos of Tommie Martin on the job during the past 16 years that she spent as a Gila County Supervisor – but have you seen the cute picture of her beaming and posing as a teen-age rodeo queen; or smiling while holding a rifle and socializing with Ethiopian tribesmen; or this Arizona cowgirl astride a camel on that same trip?

So many were shocked and saddened at the news that Tommie Rae Cline Martin passed just before Christmas. This week her family shared links to a tribute page online filled with photos and spanning a singularly unique lifetime. Make sure your computer audio is turned up when you explore the page – don’t miss a playlist including some of her favorite gospel songs: “Will the Circle be Unbroken” by Joan Baez; “Do Lord” by Larry Gatlin and the Gatlin Brothers; “I'll Fly Away” by Joey & Rory.

A public memorial gathering surely would have drawn an overflow crowd; pandemic precautions rule that out, for now – but family and friends will be invited to a joyous celebration of her life later in 2021, on a date to be announced, once it is appropriate and safe for large crowds to gather again. For now, though, here’s an invitation to the website:

Got a favorite memory about Tommie to share? Add your anecdote to dozens who have already signed the guestbook. "Tommie, eldest daughter, big sister, leader, kindness with a touch of toughness that inspired all of us who were blessed in knowing you – love to all your family and your many, many friends,” wrote one.

In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation in Tommie’s memory to any non-profit or charity in the Payson-Pine area. She was an advocate for children, the arts, pets (particularly cats); and the outdoors including rodeo and competition shooting, the homeless and the Tonto Natural Bridge.

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