Mary Ruth Martens, 81, Richmond, died Thursday, Nov. 21, 2019, at her home, surrounded by her loving family.

Mary was born July 31, 1938, in Norborne, the daughter of Harvey Robert and Mary Katherine (Wood) Ferguson.  She was united in marriage to LeeRoy Martens Jr. of Norborne on June 19, 1954; he survives of the home.

Mary was reared and educated on the family farm in Norborne and graduated from Norborne High School in 1957.  

Growing up as a child, Mary kept up with the boys when it came to getting the chores done. She worked in tax preparation and accounting, for many years, as an enrolled agent. Mary worked for 30 years for C.D. Holtzen and Associates in Richmond before going out on her own and working out of her home for 20 years.  

She was an active community member and participated in local organizations, including the homemaker’s club (now F.C.E.). She was a 4-H club advisor for 53 years, a training chairman for the Big Muddy District Cub Scouts, receiving the Silver Beaver Award, a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution and the Colonial Dames.  

Mary was a very determined person , and when it came to her family, she was in charge, or you might say she ruled the roost (and the rooster).  She was overwhelmingly proud of her family, she was the best hostess, and she could make a meal out of anything.

Additional survivors include: her children, Ruth Marie (James) Mellor of St. Charles, David Allen (Anita) Martens of Cross Timbers, Katherine Ann (Kirk) Bohanan of Grove City, Ohio, and Robert Emil (Johnna) Martens of Hardin; two brothers, Roy (Janice) Ferguson and Carl Ferguson, both of St. Joseph; one sister, Helen Gill of St. Joseph; 13 grandchildren: Christi (Justin) Annin, Katie (Ryan) Shuck, Jessica (Jeff) Yeates, David (Jolene) Martens Jr., James (Deanna) Martens, Cynthia Martens, Amy Covey, Sara Thomas, Brooke (Steven) Wynne, Eric Bohanan, Whitney (Ross) Bullard, Kelley Martens and Emily Martens; and 33 great-grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her parents; one son, LeeRoy Edward Martens; one daughter, Sara Virginia Martens; one brother, Robert “Bud” Ferguson and one sister, Sara Kline.

The family suggests memorial contributions be made to the Ray County Early Bird’s FCE or to any local youth organization. They can be left at or mailed to Thurman Funeral Home, 507 E. Main St. – P.O. Box 190, Richmond, MO 64085.

Funeral services will be at 11 a.m., Wednesday, Nov. 27, 2019, at Thurman Funeral Home in Richmond. Visitation will be from 6 to 8 p.m., Tuesday, Nov. 26, 2019, at the funeral home. Burial will be in Fairhaven Cemetery, Norborne.  

Online condolences may be left at

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