Martha "Marti" J. Latham, age 82, of Spicer, died Monday morning, April 13, at Bethesda Pleasant View Nursing Home in Willmar.
Funeral services will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Friday, April 17, at St. Luke's Episcopal Church in Willmar. Interment will be at the Spicer Mausoleum. Arrangements are with Peterson Brothers Green Lake Funeral Home in Spicer.
Martha "Marti" Jean Latham was born on June 27, 1932 in Rice Lake, Wisconsin, the daughter of Adolph and Lois (LeRoy) Scharmann. She grew up in Minneapolis and graduated from Minneapolis West High School in 1950. Marti graduated from the University of Minnesota in primary education. She taught in California and Nebraska and was a community organizer in Alabama and Virginia where her children Paul and Mary were born. Next she was director of the Westport Nursery School in Connecticut where she was recognized for her skill and efforts by well educated and celebrity parents.
Traveling to Darwin, Australia, she worked with families involved in developing a new copper mine for Freeport, her husband Allen's employer in Indonesia, where they moved during the mine startup. Marti helped organize a multi language/culture school in a rapidly growing mining community while arranging for and entertaining government and business dignitaries.
Following this, the family moved to Louisiana where Allen pursued energy resources for Freeport and Marti's become involved in the Covington community. When the company decided to move the family to Denver, Marti's thought it would be better for Paul and Mary was in one place.
When Marti arrived in Spicer it was in a new house in a new subdivision. Freeport designated Spicer as an office and Marti helped out in that while Allen was locating and acquiring energy resources which continued until the energy shortage ended. Marti then helped in small residential and commercial land developments and acquired a real estate license. She then became a real estate broker and helped may families move to and settle in the Spicer area.
The family owned a summer house on Green Lake that was designated a historic place. Rather than developing and selling it as residential lots, Marti helped establish it as the Spicer Castle Inn and Restaurant.
During this period, she also became a closing agent for home loans for a wide range of banks and financial institutions and was sought out because of her skills.
Following her stroke in 2013, she became a resident at Bethesda Pleasant View where she contributed good humor and consideration for others.
Marti was an active person. She loved children, puppies, music, helping others, coffee, the color red and applesauce. Many benefited from Mart not "letting grass grow under her feet."
She is survived by her loving husband, Allen of Spicer; one daughter, Mary (and Michael) Swanson of Spicer; four grandchildren, Allen Latham III, Emily Latham, Curry (and Tiffany) Swanson and Christopher Swanson; five great grandchildren, Austin, Jeremiah, Noah, Isabelle and Curry William Swanson. Also surviving is one sister, Betty Rodengen of Woodbury and a daughter-in-law, Colleen Latham of Lee, NH., besides other relatives and friends.
She was preceded in death by her parents; her son, Dr. Paul Latham in 2013 and one sister, Ruth Bauman.
Spicer City Cemetery
577 Agnes Street West
Spicer, MN, 56288
APR 17. 11:00 AM
St. Luke's Episcopal Church
422 6th Street SW
Willmar, MN, US