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H. Rilla MartinJanuary 6, 1925 ~ December 30, 2016 (age 91)
GARDNER - H. Rilla (Putnam) Martin, 91, formerly of 623 Green Street, Gardner, died peacefully Friday afternoon, December 30, 2016 in Gardner Rehabilitation and Nursing Center.
She was born in Winchester, NH on January 6, 1925, daughter of the late Fred H. and Carrie (Burhoe) Putnam and lived in Gardner for many years. Rilla was a graduate of Keene State College in 1947 and taught in public schools in Dublin and Keene, NH and Westminster, MA.
Rilla was the director-teacher of Bethany Christian Nursery School from 1968 until her retirement in 1987. She was a member of Bethany Baptist Church of Gardner and was active there for many years in Senior Choir; director of its Children Choir, teacher and superintendent of its Sunday School and a teacher in its Vacation Bible Schools. She served with Child Evangelism Fellowship of Worcester County, teaching Good News Clubs and Summer 5-Day Clubs. Rilla also worked with Boy Scouts of America as a former Cub Scout Den Leader.
Her husband of 53 years, Francis E. Martin, died in 2002. She leaves her children, Francis E. Martin Jr. of Tallahassee, FL, Miriam R. Sawyer of Moncton, NB, Canada, Sheila M. Pervier of East Templeton, William H. Martin of Gardner and Richard E. Martin of Templeton; a brother Stanley R. Putnam of Danielson, CT; thirteen grandchildren and fourteen great grandchildren. A grandson, Shawn Sawyer and a brother, Albert A. Putnam, preceded her in death.
A memorial service will be held Thursday, January 5, 2017 at 6 PM in Bethany Baptist Church, 72 Ryan Street, Gardner.
Burial will be in Wildwood Cemetery.
Memorial donations may be made to American Cancer Society, 30 Speen Street, Framingham, MA 01701 or to Bethany Baptist Church Memorial Fund, 72 Ryan Street, Gardner, MA 01440.
Stone-Ladeau Funeral Home, 343 Central Street, Winchendon is directing arrangements.