Rusty  Martin

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Ronald Ray "Rusty" Martin died August 11, 2019 at his home Southeast of Checotah. Rusty was born September 19, 1944 to David Franklin "Dick" and Virgie William Martin in Checotah, OK. He was born and raised in Checotah, OK and graduated from Checotah High School in 1962 and was an All-State and All-American football player. Rusty received a scholarship to Oklahoma State University and graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture. He moved to Edmonton, Alberta, Canada to play professional football for the Edmonton Eskimos before returning home to serve in the United States Army. Rusty then moved to Liberal, KS to become the feed lot manager for Seward County Land and Cattle. This job then led him to Hereford, TX as manager of the Outside Cattle Operations in Texas and New Mexico. Opportunity brought him back to his beloved Checotah where he spent his life owning and operating the Rafter R Ranch. Rusty served on numerous boards including the Board of Regents for Oklahoma State University and A & M Colleges; Chairman of the Oklahoma Cattlemen's Range Round-Up Committee; Director of the National Livestock Commission from 1987-2019; Board of Directors for the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association; and a life-long member of the First Baptist Church of Checotah, OK. Heaven gained a true cowboy. Rusty loved the Lord, believed in hard work, and never met a lady that he didn't stand up and tip his hat for. He wasn't much for straddling the fence and you always knew where you stood with him. If not working cattle or baling hay you could find him solving the world's problems at the bank on a Saturday or having coffee at the local cafe with the other members of the affectionately known "Liars Table." He wore a big hat, but he had an even bigger heart. He loved his family, his friends, and his community. He will be missed by all ... He is survived by the mother of his children, Karen Harding, their two daughters and husbands, Shannon and Bill Brady of Healdton, OK and Kyla and Malachi Millard of Skiatook, OK. Four grandchildren: Martin and wife Taylor Brady, Cheyenne and husband Eric White; Kadan and husband Brett Eibner; and Micalah Millard. Great grandchildren: Kannon and Karter Ray White, and a host of nieces and nephews, family, friends and special friend Gretchen Payne. He is also survived by his Oklahoma State football family. Preceding him in death were his parents, sister, Betty Blackburn and brother, Dusty Martin. Viewing will be from 9AM-7PM on Thursday, August 15, 2019 with his family greeting friends from 4-7PM at Garrett Family Funeral Home. Services celebrating the life of Rusty will be held at 10:30AM on Friday, August 16, 2019 at First Baptist Church with Reverend Tim Turner officiating. Private committal prayers and interment will follow in Greenlawn Cemetery under the personal direction of John Garrett. Sons-in-law Bill Brady and Malachi Millard, grandson Martin Brady, grandsons-in-law Eric White and Brett Eibner and Scott Campbell, his right-hand man will serve as Casket Bearers. Members of OSU Football Team will serve as Honorary Casket Bearers.
You may share online condolences with Rusty's family at www.garrettfamilyfuneralhome.com.
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Published on August 14, 2019
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3 posts

Chuck A.
Aug 23, 2019
I met Rusty through Malachi. I could tell immediately he was a true statesman. Easily connected with him and enjoyed visiting with him. I was really saddened to hear of his passing.

Heaven did gain a true cowboy !
Chuck Hensley
Aug 16, 2019
I was a year behind Rusty in Checotah. We played football and some basketball together. He was the best football player I ever saw in high school. In very elite company. We were at Okla. St. at the same time and I got to see him play in the Big 8. He was Soph. lineman of the year and was best friends with Walt Garrison. A real credit to Checotah
Jim R Lashley
Aug 15, 2019
RUSTY WAS A GREAT FRIEND.AND WAS LOVED BY MY MOTHER IN LAW AND MY FATHERINLAW RUSSELL DUKE AND HIS WIFE DORIS DUKE. I MOVED TO CHECOTAH IN 1999. RUSTY WAS THE NICEST PERSON ALWAYS FRIENDLY ALWAYS SAYING HELLO. I NEVER KNEW OF HIS FOOTBALL ACHIEVEMENTS UNTIL I SAW ALL OF HIS OKLAHOMA PICTURES AT CHARLIES CHICKEN. ALONG WITH THE DUVALS WE HAVE LOST A GREAT MAN ! I WILL MISS YOU RUSTY ! JIM/BETTY AND TODD LASHLEY