Angelo Martin

Angelo Martin was called home to the Lord on Tuesday, March 17th, 2020.  He was born on October 1st in 1927 in Topeka, Kansas the 6th child of Joseph & Cecilia (Montoya) Luevano.  We were all blessed to have him in this world for 92 years.  Angelo, or Angel as he was known in Dawes County, was the last surviving member from a family of 9 that made its way to western Nebraska in 1933.  He was drafted in to the Army Air Corps at the age of 19 in 1946 going in at a meager 5’9 and being discharged in 1948 at the height of 6’2”.

It was in Whitney that he met his wife Delphine marrying in Gering, Nebraska on March 15th, 1950.  To this union brought twelve happy children whom were always eagerly awaiting his arrival home from the sugar beet fields of rural Whitney, Nebraska. 

Angelo and Delphine made their living at farming in Whitney from 1950 to 1968.  What most won’t recall is that he ran for Sheriff of Dawes County in 1970 in a tightly close race with incumbent Lester Jensen losing by only six votes.   Angel was often deputized by state and local law enforcement to aid in the unrest at Pine Ridge Indian Reservation leading up to the occupation of Wounded Knee, South Dakota in 1973. 

The Martin’s moved to Alliance in the summer 1973 bringing all nine kids with them to begin their dreams of operating a restaurant/cafe aptly titled Martin’s Barbeque.  It was then that his iconic status in Box Butte County began starting with the purchase of a 1970 International Harvester 32 Passenger School to transport his kids to school.  Most recall it being painted with advertisement for the small eatery.  As the restaurant evolved it became more famous for its Mexican food fare than the burger & fries joint it started out to be and thus the story of Martin’s Family Restaurant unfolds.  All nine children grew up and worked in on what dad used to call, “that little hell hole.”  It was in that “little hell hole” where his children were taught the rewards of hard work, good customer service, and of course learn of special Mexican recipes for green chile, mole sauce, and his famous, Angelito’s Mexican Hot Sauce!

Of course, we will always remember what a great time it was to hear his stories about family, childhood memories of impoverishment, and funny anecdotes.   Most stories though are of those of him driving around squeelin’ tires and driving very fast in one of his various motorized toys whether it be bus, tractor, firetruck, or ambulance!

We, the children of this wonderful man, are deeply saddened to lose such a guy whom had an amazing impact on so many of those whom were fortunate to have crossed his path.  The bittersweet part of it is knowing that he was a great man and one that God truly loved.  His love shown for not only his children, and that was obvious, but for everyone who was in his perimeter including extended family and so many community members.  He was often known for his generosity and faith often engaging with others easily.   He was not without tragedy though and endured many hardships including the tragic loss of three young children in an auto accident in 1956.  Resiliency is what he possessed going on to bore more children and now the nine surviving siblings.  

May you rest in peace Dad, Uncle, and Grandfather and that you have a very joyful celebration as you meet in heavenly reunion with your wife, Delphine and children Samuel, Maggie, Ernestine.

He was preceded in death by his siblings Henry, Danny, Josephine, Albert, Bernice, Mary, Sophie, and Gloria.

Angel is survived by his nine surviving children, Mathew (Cherry) Martin of Alliance, Grace Martin of Fremont, NE, Sophia (Pat) Covey of Aurora, CO, Eric (Tina) Martin of Chadron, NE, Hank (Carol) Martin of Salida, CO, Susie Martin of Scottsdale, AZ, Sally (Vince) Brown of Bailey CO, Denise (Patrick) Marcoe, Janesville, WI, and Lucy (Kurt) Nederbrock of Ahwatukee, AZ.                                                                                              

Visitation will be Sunday, March 22, 2020 from 1-5 p.m. at the Bates-Gould Funeral Home.  A memorial service will be held at a later date. Angelo will be laid to rest at Calvary Cemetery in Chadron, Nebraska with a private family service due to the Coronavirus mandates.  We sincerely encourage each person to make their decision whether to attend the visitation based on the best interest of your health and that of your community.

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