PENNSYRR.COM by Jerry Britton

Jerry Britton's PRR Middle Division in HO Scale

bob martin

This past Sunday we lost a good friend, Robert "Bob" Martin of Emigsville, Pa. The following is from the York Daily Record:

Robert E. Martin, 74, died Sunday, December 18, 2016 at home. He was the husband of Carole L. (Moyer) Martin. Mr. and Mrs. Martin were married for 51 years on August 21, 2016. [Ed. Note: Carole's father, John Moyer, was the fireman on GG1 #4876 leading the Federal Express when it crashed into Union Station in Washington, D. C., on January 15, 1953.]

Born April 18, 1942 in York, he was the son of the late Robert C. and Mable I. (Plymire) Martin.


Bob retired from federal civil service (Department of Defense) after 35 years of service in January 1999. He is also a retired U.S.A.F. Lt. Colonel by virtue of serving more than 36 years in the Pennsylvania Air National Guard. At his retirement from the Air National Guard, he was Commander of the 193rd Mission Support Squadron, based in Middletown. Bob is a member of the NMRA (since 1972), PRRT&HS, Friends of the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania, Friends of the East Broad Top, and the York County Heritage Trust.

An accomplished modeler, Bob's freelance HO scale Central Pennsylvania Railroad(with a slight PRR &WM flavor) is known throughout central Pennsylvania, Maryland, northern Virginia, and West Virginia. The CPRR has been on many model railroad layout tours including PRRT&HS national conventions and NMRA division, region and national conventions. He held open operating sessions on the CPRR every month at his home.

Bob was a 1960 graduate of William Penn Senior High School. He was a member of Calvary United Methodist Church.

In addition to his wife, he is survived by a son, James R. and his wife, Tammy Martin of York; a grandson, Derek Martin of York; and two granddaughters, Kaitlyn and Sarah Martin, both of York. He is also survived by his brother, Ronald and his wife, Hope Martin of Zephyrhills, FL.

Funeral services will be held Thursday, December 22, 2016 at 11 a.m. at the Etzweiler Funeral Homes and Cremation Service, 1111 E. Market St., York, with Chaplain Richard E. Denison officiating. Burial will be in Greenmount Cemetery with graveside military rites conducted by the York County Veterans Honor Guard. A visitation will be held Thursday from 10 to 11 a.m. at the funeral home.

Memorial contributions may be made to the American Heart Association , 610 Community Way, Lancaster, PA 17603.

Arrangements by the Etzweiler Funeral Homes and Cremation Service, York.

Published in York Daily Record & York Dispatch on Dec. 21, 2016.

I've had the pleasure of knowing Bob for about 20 years. Following my first operating session at Larry Reynolds' in Allentown, I was eager to find a local layout on which to operate. Someone -- I don't recall who -- referred me to Bob. I called him one morning and he invited me over during my lunch break to see the layout. He was an eager and gracious host and extended an invitation to me to attend the next operating session.

Bob's op sessions were the perfect place for a new operator to cut their teeth. Many op session environments are very rigid and their crews unforgiving, making experience a challenge for the "new hire." Bob made it easy. I quickly became quite adept, including running the yard and dispatching.

I've been working on the NMRA's Achievement Program and I logged all of my hours for the Dispatcher AP on Bob's layout, as well as most of my hours for the Association Volunteer AP. Thank you, Bob, for the opportunity!

I've always joked with Bob about all of the things he wasn't going to do with his layout:

  1. Not going to convert to DCC -- done.
  2. Not going to add wireless -- done.
  3. Not going to go to sound -- done.
  4. Not going to expand into the basement under the garage -- done.
  5. Not going to operate under the garage -- done.
  6. Not going to add scenery under the garage -- done.

Bob was also well known for his alter ego, the "Super Seeper." The "annointed one" would always find out when one of the crew made grievous mistakes. After interviewing witnesses and deliberating, the Super Seeper would render his decision and those found guilty would be added to "The List"!

Though some may have dreaded "making The List", Bob's intent was not to make fun of others but to make fun of ourselves. Still wondering how someone lost a 14 car passenger train that they were running!

Somehow over 20 years, I never made "The List." I may, perhaps, be the only current member of the crew able to make that claim.

Bob and Carole have always been wonderful hosts, not only for operating sessions, but for open houses and the annual CPRR picnic where we've been treated to fare prepared by "Burn'em Bad Bob"!

Bob, you will be missed. Thank you!