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Obituary: Jim Ingram Martin

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Jim Ingram Martin was the son of Rex Ingram Martin, of St. Albans, England, The United Kingdom, and Mary Ellen Crehan Martin, a first generation Irish-American of Boston, Massachusetts.  He had a B.S. (Psychology & History) from Rice University in 1966, and an M.S. and Ph.D. (Physiological Psychology, with minors in Systems Engineering and Social Psychology) from the University of Arizona in 1971. He was awarded a two year Post Doctorate in San Diego by the National Academy of Science.

He conducted Human Factors research for the Department of Defense (Navy, Marine Corps, Defense Communications Agency, National Institute of Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice, and the CIA: 1971-1978), served as the Safety and Health Manager of Lone Star Army Ammunition Plant (1979-1987), and was a Professor of Psychology and Research at Texas A&M University – Texarkana (1987-2006).  Throughout the first decades of his professional career, he held adjunct professorships at the University of Arizona, at the Professional School of Psychology in California, and at East Texas State.

In addition, in 1978 he realized a lifelong wish to live in the country when he purchased a cattle ranch outside Horatio, Ark., which was expanded with his longtime neighbor and partner, Lealon E. Dossey, into a 330 acre Black Brangus cattle ranch, a Missouri Fox Trotter horse ranch, and a Fox and Coyote Pen for running Walker and other foxhounds.

Teaching and conducting research were what Jim most enjoyed, second only to studying the learning and behavior of canines and, especially coyotes. While in California and Arkansas, he worked with Ice, a young Samoyed white shepherd mix.  At six months of age, she knew over 70 words identifying places, objects, and things to do (more than Chaser, “the smartest dog in the world,” knew at that same age).  In Arkansas, she was set free to enjoy more natural dog behaviors.  She greatly enjoyed hunting, but that led to her premature death by a cougar half a mile below the ranch house.  In less than 15 minutes one night in San Diego, he taught her to nudge the kitchen door open, turn around and paw it shut, until it was latched and locked.  Having the thick Samoyed fur, she liked to stay in the cooler night air outside until she was ready for bed. One of the last words he taught her was “contrails.”  She learned it in a single session and, upon hearing the word, she would scan the skies until she found and locked onto a contrail!  She was the best!

Jim is survived by his sister and brother-in-law, Margaret Ann Martin Baehler and Walter Baehler, his niece Michelle Giddens Ledbetter, his nephew, Bob (Robert Gregory) Giddens, III, his grand nephew, Cody Giddens, and, in The United Kingdom, by his Aunt, Jean, and by first cousins Paul and Ann Martin, Shelia Pitman, and numerous relations throughout that nation and Canada. He is also survived by many very close friends who call him part of their families: Thelma Dossey Miller’s children and grandchildren of Oklahoma, DA and Diana Dossey of Kentucky, and, in  Arkansas, by Ronnie and Shelia Halter and families, Robert and James Gray, Terri and Doris Gray and all the Gray families, and by many more. 

Graveside services for Jim will be 10 a.m., Friday, July 27, at Saratoga Cemetery in the Gray family row alongside his ranching partner and mentor of 37 years, Lealon E. Dossey.  He goes gladly to meet his Creator and his best friend.

Online at www.latimerfuneralhome.com