Dr. Phyllis Jean Martin 1923 - 2021

Dr. Phyllis Jean Martin passed away at the age of 98 in December of 2021. Due to the pandemic and restrictions, we have been unable to celebrate the life of this remarkable woman until now.

She was born Phyllis Jean Cochrane in Yakima, Washington, to Warren A. and Eunice (Coad) Cochrane. The family moved to Seattle, where Phyllis grew up with her older sister and younger brother. After graduation from Queen Anne High School, she started her college studies at Linfield College.

During the summer break after her freshman year, she married Clarence P. Martin before he was shipped overseas to Europe. Phyllis moved to San Francisco after her junior year at Linfield to join Clarence for recuperation from the injuries he sustained in France during WWII. Clarence’s work led them to Salinas, then Corte Madera, and then Santa Rosa, California. Together, they had three children, Richard, Janine and Dean. Unfortunately, Clarence died in 1966, leaving Phyllis to finish raising their three children.

Always a goal setter, Phyllis went back to college, taking night classes while in Corte Madera. She completed her BA and obtained her teaching certificate while in Santa Rosa, starting her teaching career at Piner Elementary in Santa Rosa. She continued teaching and furthering her education and obtained her master's degree in Education and her Ph.D.

In 1971, she was invited to join the Linfield faculty in helping set up their elementary education program. So, she was back in McMinnville at Linfield after a 26-year absence. More goal-setting led Phyllis to become a Master Gardener and obtain her private pilot’s license, a dream of hers since her late teens.

In 1977, Phyllis married Dr. Norman G. Goss, a McMinnville optometrist. They had been classmates at Linfield in the early 1940s. Together, they were very involved with their church and Linfield College (now, Linfield University). Upon their retirements, Phyllis and Norman traveled extensively. Whether by commercial aircraft, cruise ship, their camper van, or by their own private plane, they were always on the go. Norman passed away in 2012.

Living a life of learning, teaching and serving, Phyllis was a woman who gave so much to others and impacted more lives than the family will ever know. She had a special gift for facilitation. She was involved in ABW (American Baptist Women) through First Baptist Church of McMinnville, AAUW (American Association of University Women), ABACUS, CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate), Child Development Center of McMinnville as director, Habitat for Humanity, SMART (Start Making a Reader Today), PEO Chapter FG of McMinnville, and more. In her “down” time, she was a world-class knitter and a voracious reader.

Phyllis was predeceased by her parents, her siblings and their spouses, and her husbands.

Phyllis is survived by her children, Richard, Janine and Dean, and their spouses, plus several nieces and nephews. She also leaves six grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren. She is dearly missed and will be forever loved.

Her ashes have been placed alongside her first husband in Santa Rosa.

The family wishes to thank some of the special staff at Vineyard Heights, where Phyllis lived since 2014, and extend special thanks to the caregivers from HelloCare, especially Christina, with whom she developed a very special bond.

A Celebration of Life for Phyllis will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, November 5, 2022, at First Baptist Church in McMinnville. Colorful attire is encouraged. Masks, though not required, are recommended.

In lieu of flowers, Phyllis requested contributions made to McMinnville First Baptist Church Master Plan or Linfield University Early Childhood/Psychology Scholarship. To leave condolences, visit www.macyandson.com.


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