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William (Bill) Martin

November 27, 1939 - February 23, 2012

Bill Martin passed away peacefully on February 23, 2012, surrounded by his family and friends. He took a direct route to Heaven where he will be with our Lord. He knew there would be many new rivers to fish upon his arrival.

Bill was born in Portland, Ore., on November 27, 1939, to William Samuel and Alma Olson Martin. He graduated from Cleveland High School in Portland. Bill was in the Navy on active duty from 1959 to 1963, during which time he learned his lifetime trade as a boilermaker.

On March 17, 1978, Bill married Betty Covell Kondziela, the love of his life, in Portland, Ore. Together they raised their three sons, Todd Martin, Ken Kondziela, and Fred Kondziela. In July 1982, the family moved to Central Point, Ore., where Bill and Betty established Betel Combustion. Bill was well known throughout the valley for his knowledge of industrial and commercial heating equipment and systems. He was also well known for his dry wit, his curmudgeon attitude (which everyone saw through) and his generous spirit. He was always willing to help and could fix absolutely anything! He was a very generous boss, an extremely hard worker, and maintained high expectations of his employees and his family.

His joy in life was his family. He loved the outdoors, especially the Rogue River, rafting with friends and family, teaching his sons to row, and teaching everyone he knew how to fish. Howard Prairie was one of his favorite places, as he took his grandchildren there and helped them catch their first fish. The grandkids loved going camping, fishing or just hanging out with Papa.

He was an remarkable husband, caring and loving. He was an amazing father, of which his sons are living proof, and he was the best of the best grandfathers, to which his grandchildren can attest...teaching, riding bicycles, having tea parties, playing hide and seek, building birdhouses, tool boxes and, of course, fishing!

Bill is survived by his wife, Betty; sons and daughters-in-law, Todd Martin and Rebecca Sharrer, Ken and Holly Kondziela, and Fred and Robyn Kondziela; daughter-in-law, Susan Martin; grandchildren, Tyler Martin, Sidney, Bryce and Phoebe Kondziela, Autum, Alex and Andrej Schwan, and Angela Magaris; cousins, John and Cathy Schleining, and Wayne Amundson; nephew, Evan Schleining; niece, Lara Schleining, and Josh and Caswell; sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Beverly and David Sawyer; special friends, Andy, Rhonda, and Wil Cochrane, Courtney Cloyd, and Ann Staley. There are many other friends who loved Bill dearly, too numerous to name here.

He was preceeded in death by his parents; his brother, Virgil; and aunt and uncle, Rita and George Schleining.

The family would like to extend our sincere gratitude to everyone for their on-going love and support. In lieu of flowers, remembrances can be sent to the American Cancer Society, Medford Providence Hospice, Uncle Bill's Cancer Awareness Fund (Esophageal cancer research call 541-944-4149), or please take a child fishing.

Hillcrest Memorial Park and Mortuary, Medford, Ore., is in care of arrangements. www.hillcrestmortuary.com

William (Bill) Martin