The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

March 20, 2014

F. David Martin, 93, Lewisburg


The Daily Item

— LEWISBURG — F. David Martin, 93, a longtime resident of Lewisburg, died on Wednesday, March 19, 2014, at his home.

He was born March 29, 1920, a son of the late Francis Clarence and Agnes (Stover) Martin, of Johnstown, where he grew up.

David graduated from Valley Forge Military Academy and went on to study at the University of Chicago where he received both his undergraduate degree and his PhD with honors in philosophy.

In 1949, he accepted a position at Bucknell University in the philosophy department where he taught for 34 years and chaired the department for more than 10 years until his retirement in 1983. David received the Christian Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching in 1967 and became an honorary member of Phi Beta Kappa in 1969. He was named an honorary citizen of Johnstown, served on the Public Committee for the Humanities in Pennsylvania from 1980-1984, and was the Commonwealth Speaker for Pennsylvania from 1983-1987. He was also a founding member of the Institute for Social Philosophy.

David loved the arts, especially sculpture, architecture, painting, and music. The philosophy of art, the function of art in society, and the aesthetic experience were a perennial focus in his teaching and writings. He was the author of numerous scholarly articles and nine research grants in addition to several books. In 1957, David was granted a Fulbright scholarship, moving his family to Florence and Rome, Italy. During those two years, he conducted research resulting in the publication of his first book, “Art and the Religious Experience.” He later wrote, “Sculpture and Enlivened Space” as well as his last book, entitled “Facing Death - Theme and Variations.” Perhaps his most lasting legacy in the academic world will be his book, “Humanities Through the Arts,” published first in 1975 and currently released in its 9th edition.

He served in the Army from 1943-1946. Seven months of that service were spent in Korea following the surrender of Japan.

Always the endless traveler, David conducted countless European tours with students, adults, and his family during his lifetime. He traveled extensively throughout the world and was a visiting professor in the “Semester at Sea” program as well as a guest lecturer for Princess Cruise Lines after his retirement.

In addition to his academic interests, David loved Bucknell University, the town of Lewisburg, and the Susquehanna River. He was a member of Bucknell Golf Club and won four senior club championships. In 1942, he won the Big Ten tennis championship representing the University of Chicago, remarking with self deprecation, that he only won because better players had already been drafted into the service. David loved the game of water volleyball which he played with his children, grandchildren, and, until recently, at Ridgecrest where he lived.

David will be greatly missed by his loving wife, Doris, to whom he was married for 71 years; three daughters, Suzanne Reish and her husband, Gale, of Lewisburg, Amy Martin, of Bloomsburg, and Janice Martin and her husband, Toby, of Portland, Ore.; a son, Timothy Martin and his wife, Pamela, of Portland; 10 grandchildren; and 11 great-grandchildren.

David lived an incredible life filled with many experiences and accomplishments. He will be remembered most for his wonderful sense of humor and love for his family. Contributions in David’s memory may be made to Evangelical Community Hospital or RiverWoods Senior Living Community.

A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m., April 13, at Bucknell Hall, Bucknell University, Lewisburg.

Funeral arrangements are by the John H. Shaw III Funeral Home, Market and Eighth streets, Lewisburg.