Johnny Martens was born at Swan Plain, SK on June 2nd, 1935 to John and Maria Martens.
In 1947 the family moved to Altona, MB when John was 12. Then in 1951 the family moved to Lavenham to the farm. John went to work in 1953 for Henry Marraughs in Winnipeg as a carpenter.
He met his sweetheart, Mary Klassen in 1954. In June of 1958 John was baptized upon the confession of his faith and on October 5th of that same year, Johnny and Mary were married at the Bergthaler Mennonite church in MacGregor, MB. They resided in an apartment on Spence Street in Winnipeg. John went to work at Qualico Construction as a carpenter. So in November of 1959 along came a little girl, Janet Caroline. Then in January of 1963 another little girl was born, Connie Sandra. They then decided with a family they should move to the family farm, so in September of 1963 they moved to Lavenham, MB. Thinking it was going to be a boy, along came another little girl in May of 1965, Colleen Ann.
John worked another year at Qualico Construction and then decided to farm for a living. They farmed for 7 years when in 1970 John went to work for J.P. Wiebe & Sons in MacGregor as a carpenter. They finally received that long awaited son in February of 1976, Matthew Clinton John. In 1997, John and good friends Abe & Pete Dyck continued to build together for others. In 1984 John built a new family home on the farm. They also attended the Bergthaler Mennonite Church at this time. In 1988, they moved into Lavenham.
As a family we enjoyed singing and playing together. Music was a very big part of our life. As the children grew and left home, John & Mary continued and began to travel to churches, festivals, prisons, care homes and funerals to bring the gospel to others through song.
John loved playing ball with the Country Club ball club. He had great joy in being part of the Bar W Ranch Boys. Watching boxing was always a passionate interest. John and Mary always enjoyed spending time with their friends at McDonald’s or A&W.
In October 2012, John was diagnosed with bladder cancer. Then in December of the same year, he was diagnosed with kidney cancer where they then removed one of his kidneys. So they retired and moved from Lavenham to Portage la Prairie in April 2013. Then in 2017 he was diagnosed with lung cancer and left John with no recourse. He ran his race well as it says in Hebrews 12:1. He did it with such grace and kept his sense of humor to the end. He left a legacy of love for God, love for his wife and family and love for others.
As of June 23rd, 2019 John was admitted to Palliative Care in the General Hospital of Portage la Prairie. John went to be with his Saviour on October 19th, 2019.
John is survived by his wife Mary (Klassen), daughter Janet (Rob) Gervais, daughter Connie (Jerry) Rempel, daughter Colleen (Don) Wiebe and son Matthew (Carla) Martens. Grandchildren (12 and spouses) and great grandchildren (20) and 1 great, great grandchild.
The family would like to thank Pastor Myron & Claudette Friesen for all of their ongoing care and visits. They served John and Mary so faithfully over the years.
We thank the medical staff and Dr. Quesada of the Portage General Hospital for their care, compassion and friendship they gave to John and Mary during their time of need. As a family, we say thank you. As well, we thank all of our friends and family for their prayer and ongoing care through visits, calls, food, etc
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Sunset Palliative Care
Box 92,, Portage la Prairie MB R1N 3B2
Central Plains Cancer Services
318 Saskatchewan Avenue E., Portage la Prairie, Manitoba R1N 0K8,