On Tuesday, August 26, 2014, Lawrence “Larry” J. Martinez lost his hard-fought battle with kidney and lung cancer and passed away peacefully at home surrounded by his family.
Larry was born February 27, 1949, in Lompoc, California, to Joe F. and Helen G. Martinez. He attended Lompoc schools and graduated from Lompoc High School in 1967 where he played football and baseball. He was a kind, loving and caring Husband, Dad, Papa and Friend and was loved by many.
Larry met his wife and best friend, Mary Lou Lira, of Chino, California, in Lompoc in the summer of 1968, and the two were married on December 20, 1969. Together they raised two sons, Joe and James Martinez.
Larry worked at General Motors, South Gate, California, for two years and in 1971 he left to begin his life long dream career of driving truck. He relocated his family back to his beloved home town of Lompoc in 1974, and continued to drive truck for 40 more years retiring in July of 2013. During his career in Lompoc, he worked for Lompoc Truck, Western Manufacturer’s Service, Manville and Valley Rock. After his retirement he enjoyed spending time with his family. His grandchildren were the light of his life. Larry coached his sons’ teams in Little League (Braves, Dyer Heaters and Grange Sprouts) and Babe Ruth baseball for many years. He was a wonderful, positive role model for many young men. Larry was an avid Dodgers and Raiders fan. He enjoyed NASCAR racing (#24 Jeff Gordon) and taking his buddy “Driver”, his Springer Spaniel, for his runs.
Larry is survived by his wife of 44 years, Mary Lou Martinez, his son Joe (Angelica) Martinez of Hesperia, California, his son James (Teresa) Martinez of Lompoc, his grandchildren Arianna, Mario and Ian of Hesperia and Tara, Jimmy, Alex, Anthony and his great-grandson Niko, all of Lompoc, his sister Pat (Mike) Elszy of Lompoc and numerous nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Joe F. and Helen G. Martinez.
A mass will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Friday, August 29, at La Purisima Catholic Church with inurnment directly following at Lompoc Evergreen Cemetery.