Royal Martin was born on February 18, 1943, to Alfred Jacob Martin and Annie Laura Lawrence Martin. He was primarily raised in Brilliant, Ala., but as a child lived in Miami, Fla., for five years. He graduated from Brilliant High School in 1961. Royal worked in many professions but spent the majority of his employment as a coal miner. He retired from Drummond Coal Company, where he worked for more than 25 years.
Royal can be remembered for playing many sports in high school and for the softball leagues he played on and coached during his adult years. In his 50s, he took up golf and was a member of Pikeville Country Club in Marion County, Ala. Royal was also interested in hunting and fishing and spent many happy hours with friends and family with these two hobbies. The last hobby that Royal took up was raising chickens. At his death, he had a flock of 31 chickens and a turkey. He and two of his children spent much time talking about chickens because they accrued their own flock and shared his love of hens. He was also a big fan of the Alabama Crimson Tide and enjoyed going to all of the home games. His most important goal was to become a permanent resident of heaven and spent much time attending Mt. Pleasant and Mt. Zion.
Royal Martin was a member of Mt. Pleasant Free Will Baptist Church in Brilliant, Alabama. Through his years, he served as the Sunday School Superintendent and song leader. He worked diligently to create the Mt. Pleasant Cemetery Fund. He was also a member of the Brilliant Masonic Lodge No. 601 and served as the Vice President of the Local UMWA.
He was proceeded in death by his parents, Alfred Martin and Annie Laura Lawrence Martin Smith, his niece, Lori Sewell Johnson and his nephew, Lee Sewell.
He is survived by his wife, Dianne Nelson Emerline Martin; son, Alan Martin (Shelia); daughters, Kelly Martin Whitaker (Bradd), Kristy Martin Hudson (Scott) and Kandis Martin Irvin, step-children, Renee E. Moore, Anita E. Snow (Leeland), Bryan Emerline (Laura) and Olivia Metcalf (Jason); grandchildren, Jessica Martin Davis (Jeffrey), Adam and Heath Martin, Kayla Rhudy Cole (Jeremiha), Morgan and Johnna Gibbs, Allie and Karlie Whitaker; great-grandson, Harper Knight Davis; (two more greats on the way, Jase Cole and Kenzley Martin); 11 step-grandchildren and six step-great-grandchildren; sister, Linda Martin Sewell (Dr. Aubrey Sewell); stepfather, Ira Smith (Peggy); stepbrothers. Robert Smith (Cheryl) and Jeff Smith (Mari); and stepsister, Mary Lou Cull (Jim).
The family would like to say a special thanks to Hospice of Northwest Alabama in Winfield for the care received and to all the nurses and employees at Walker Cancer Care Center in Jasper for their support and encouragement. Also, thank you to all of the people who honored Royal Martin with their presence, flowers, cards and prayers during the time of his death.
Bowen Funeral Home, Winfield; 205-487-4327