Jane Loretta Martin passed peacefully at her Westford, Pennsylvania home on Thursday afternoon, March 14, 2019, in the care of her loving family.
Jane was one of five daughters and three sons of Charles and Loretta (Schmidt) McElhinny and was born on April 22, 1935, in Homestead, Pennsylvania. Jane’s early childhood years were growing up with many family members in the neighborhood known as the McElhinny plan in Lincoln Place but her father and several of his brothers, wanted clean air and a country life for their families and in 1945 Chuck moved them to their farm on Bullis Road in Espyville Station, Pennsylvania.
A big change for a ten year old girl from catholic school in the city to North Shenango school; living on a dirt road and not being able to see your closest neighbor. Soon she was participating in many school activities and excelled in basketball, volleyball and cheerleading. The story is that Jane and her sister played together on a championship team as Conneaut Lake Indians when North Shenango High School was closed in her junior year and she went on to graduate from Conneaut Lake.
Jane loved to work and spent spare time babysitting and passed her summers working at the Espyville Boat Livery on Pymatuning Lake.
She also loved to cook and bake and while still in high school she competed in and won first prize in the Crawford county cherry pie baking contest. She would go on to share her baking talent with family and friends making thousands of wedding and Christmas cookies, pies, cakes, nut rolls and pizzelles which she shared with everyone. Jane will best be remembered for her baking at the “Lil Bit” restaurant and her famous chicken pies that kept eager customers lined-up out the door and waiting outside.
Jane also loved her dogs, gardens, canning, making jam from wild berries she picked, riding her bike and fishing. Any neighborhood kid would tell you that Jane was one of the best nightcrawler pickers to ever hold a flashlight and a coffee can.
While still in high school Jane continued her education taking night classes in typing and business at Allegheny College and soon landed her first professional position keeping books at the Niagara Chair Company in Adamsville.
Also early in high school, Jane found and would hold on to one of Westford’s most eligible, the dashing and some would say, daring Ronnie Martin. Everyone knew they were destined to be together forever and on July 27, 1957 Jane and Ronnie pledged their love and became the first couple to be married in the “new” St. Phillips Church in Linesville. In the summer of 2015, they celebrated 58 years together.
Jane would go on to complete her bachelor’s degree at Thiel College with a double major in sociology and psychology, all while working in Thiel’s library for more than 20 years, starting as a staff assistant and earning her way to the manager of the periodicals department. She held a perfect 4.0 GPA while working full time and keeping her family and household. Jane always said her proudest moment was watching her son, Chip, graduate from Thiel and then following him across the same Passavant stage to receive her own diploma all to a standing ovation. Thus becoming the first child and parent in Thiel’s history to graduate together.
After Thiel and Friday fish nights at the “Lil Bit”, Jane would go on to another career at Warren General Emergency Clinic in Andover, Ohio, where her education and experience would continue to serve the surrounding community for more than 20 years and finally retiring home with her Ronnie and Co Co at the age of 78.
Jane will be remembered for her quick wit, her helping hands and caring heart and her wonderful smile. She will be sadly missed by her loving family, lifetime friends and her Westford community who loved her so very much.
Preceding her in passing where her parents; beloved in-laws, James and Trecea Martin; two sisters, Margaret “Peggy” Pitchford and Charlene “Char” McElhinny; two brothers, Charles “Pete” McElhinny and Terance “Terry” McElhinny and her Ronnie, who passed to wait for her in August of 2015.
Jane is survived by her brother, Doug McElhinny and his wife, Merné of Greenville; two sisters, Donna Pierce of New Castle and Delores Hirschmann and her husband, Joe of Espyville; all of her precious nieces and nephews and their familes spread around the world which she always kept in her heart and her only son, Ronald “Chip” Martin and his wife, Shawn (Gilliland), of Westford.
Calling hours will be held on Monday, March 18 from 2:00 – 4:00 p.m. and 5:00 – 7:00 p.m. There will also be calling hours held on Tuesday, March 19 from 9:15 – 10:00 a.m. at Loutzenhiser-Randall Funeral Home and Cremation Services, 416 Liberty Street, Jamestown, Pennsylvania.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at Tuesday, March 19 at 10:30 a.m. at St. Margaret Roman Catholic Church, 701 Denver Street, Jamestown, Pennsylvania with Rev. V. David Foradori, Pastor, as celebrant.
Burial will be private in Park Lawn Cemetery
Memorial contributions may be made to St. Michael School, 80 North High Street, Greenville, PA 16125.