John Roberto Martinez, 89, of Salida died May 19, 2020, at Heart of the Rockies Regional Medical Center in Salida.
His death was unrelated to COVID-19.
He was born Jan. 22, 1931, in the family home at 326 Palmer St. in Salida to Juan B. and Modesta G. Martinez.
He attended McCray School, St. Joseph Catholic School and graduated from Salida High School in 1950.
He helped on the ranch of local attorney John Boyle in his youth.
In 1951, he joined the U.S. Marine Corps and was stationed at Camp Pendleton, California, before being deployed to Korea in 1952. He served in the Korean conflict until 1954, attaining the rank of sergeant. He was discharged in 1954 at Twentynine Palms, California.
Upon returning home, Mr. Martinez worked for his father transferring coal from standard gauge coal cars to narrow gauge cars heading to the Monarch Quarry on the Denver & Rio Grande Railroad. He assisted his father in dumping ash and coal cans around the area.
In 1958, he married Lois R. Madison at St. Joseph Catholic Church. They moved into the family home, where they raised their four children.
In 1959, he and his father formed Martinez Trash Co., which operated within Salida for nearly three decades until it was sold to Waste Management in 1996.
Mr. Martinez joined Robert F. Harrison Land Surveying in 1960, aiding in surveying Monarch Ski Area and the natural gas line from Del Norte to Dylan, while continuing to work for his father with the trash company.
He enjoyed hunting, fishing, making tortillas, being in the outdoors, working on vehicles, searching for pennies, completing word searches and hunting for arrowheads.
Mr. Martinez was a member of St. Joseph Catholic Church, Knights of Columbus, American Legion, Salida Masonic Lodge, Al Kaly Shrine Club, Southern Colorado Consistory, Order of the Eastern Star and Salida Elks Lodge No. 808, holding various offices in the different organizations.
He was preceded in death by his parents; sisters Predicanda “Predy” Medrano, Leona Torrano and Dorothy Vigil; and brothers, Epimenio “Pimie” Martinez, Alfred Martinez and Isabro “Chuck” Martinez.
Survivors include his wife; children, Valarie Martinez (Walt Barczak) of Denver, Curtiss Martinez of Denver, Scott (Cindy) Martinez and Adrienne (Jim) Weber of Salida; sister Eldora Scheick of Whittier, California; grandchildren, Jaclyn Lopez, Lauren (Jesse) Martinez, Avery Martinez, Madison Everett (Justin Martinez), McKenzie Everett and Modesta Everett; great-grandchildren, Alex Lopez, Allen Ortega, Lilly Ortega, Ruby Barton and Rue Hawk; stepgrandchildren, Kealy (Vance) Hawk and Tessa Weber; Lane (John) Poyser, his favorite niece; brother-in-law Rudy Vigil of Salida; and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.
Due to coronavirus restrictions, a Mass and rosary will be announced at a future date.
A private family event will take place May 23, 2020.
Memorial contributions may be made to St. Joseph Catholic Church in Salida.
Arrangements are with Lewis and Glenn Funeral Home in Salida.
Online condolences may be offered at lewisandglenn.com.