Welcome to the memorial page for

Mabel "Lillie" (Essex) Martin

April 29, 1939 ~ January 5, 2018 (age 78)

Mabel “Lillie” (Essex) Martin

was the sixth child of thirteen born to the late Deacon Isaac Sr. and Mother Dinah (Banks) Essex on April 29, 1939 in Marion, Alabama.                     

In 1951 she accepted the Lord as her personal Savior and joined their family home church, Hickory Grove Baptist Church, under the leadership of the late Rev. Ezell Stephens.  After graduating 1959 from Lincoln High School, she followed her dreams of  seeking a better life and headed to Fort Wayne, Indiana.    

After relocating, she joined Jerusalem Missionary Baptist Church under the leadership of the late Dr. Samuel Walker.  Later she moved her membership to Providence Missionary Baptist Church under the leadership of the late Pastor Emeritus Calvin Howell, Sr. where she served faithfully in the Missionary, Sunday School and Bible Study Ministries for many years. The past several years she has been under the watch of Rev. Elza Bearyman at Saint John C.M.E. Church. 

Mabel was employed at Slick Laundry, Wayne Candies and retired from Fort Wayne Developmental Center (FWDC) after 40 years of service.  At FWDC she received many honors and recognitions.  She even took advantage of many continuing educational programs that was offered including becoming a State of Indiana Certified QMA (Qualified Medication Aide).  

Later, she met Ruben Martin and was united in Holy Matrimony. In life she enjoyed helping others and sharing God’s word while seeing others prosper. She loved being a Mother, Grandmother, and Great Grandmother.  She cherished and loved spending time with her siblings, family, and friends.  

On Friday evening, January 5, 2018, she was ushered into the presence of her Savior, her work was declared done. 

Mabel was the most kind, generous and kind mama, grandma, and great grandma to her children, P. Christopher Essex, and Cheryl (Gary) Essex-Fennie; grandson, Cameron (Kelli) Essex; great grandchildren, Camden “Rocket” and Colt (“Coach”) Cannon; siblings, Ernest Sr. (Elizabeth) Essex, Isaac Jr. (Lois) Essex, Frances (Lee) Milan, Mary E. Perry, Mary L. Essex, Deacon James (Velma) Essex, Wilma (Paul) Everette, and Wilbert (Cora) Essex; sister-in-law, Gladys Essex; a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, and many other relatives and friends.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Ruben Martin; parents, Deacon Isaac Sr. and mother Dinah Essex; siblings, Deacon Arthur Essex, Sr., Deacon Albert Essex, Annie Essex, and Rosanne Essex; sister-in-law, Mattie Lou Essex and brother-in-law, Deacon Henry Perry, Jr.


If I’ve helped somebody, as I traveled along
If I’ve helped somebody, with a word or song
If I’ve helped somebody, from doing wrong
Then my living has not been in vain!


Mabel will be laid to rest in the Essex Family Cemetery  -  Marion, Alabama



 Service Information

January 13, 2018

1:00 PM to 2:00 PM
Jerusalem Baptist Church
1151 Francis Street
Fort Wayne, Indiana 46803

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