Leonard Edward Martel, aged 68, passed peacefully surrounded by his family and his closest, lifelong friend on Monday, Dec. 5, 2016. Leonard, an amazing man, will be greatly missed by all who were blessed to have known him.
Leonard was born May 8, 1948 in Anacortes, Washington to Joseph Edward Martel and Edith Bergman Martel. He was raised in Friday Harbor, Washington, a place his father referred to as “God’s country.” Leonard was a fifth-generation San Juan Islander and a proud graduate of the Friday Harbor High School class of 1967. He had a great love for flying, sailing and hunting. He always had the most amazing stories about his many adventures.
Growing up in Friday Harbor, Leonard began fishing salmon in Alaska on the boat his father built alongside his father and brother Denny. After graduation, he followed the love of his life, Pamela Freeman, to Seattle and took a job working at a shipyard in Ballard. On March 30, 1968, he married Pam and following the birth of their first child, they returned to the San Juan Islands. Always one to embrace an adventure, Leonard began running an exotic animal resort located on Spieden Island.
The young family relocated to Texas, where Leonard drilled gas and oil wells for a number of years. Leonard always said that it was the most exciting work he had ever done. In 1977, a job opportunity operating a water well-drilling rig for Barnett Pump &Irrigation led Leonard and his family back to Washington. Settling in Lind, Washington, Leonard and Pam put down roots and continued to grow their family, welcoming two additional daughters and a son. Leonard and Pam eventually purchased the drilling business and LEMCO Drilling (Leonard Edward Martel Company) was established. Leonard was known for his incredible work ethic and his children were lucky enough to learn the importance of what that meant and the pride that came with accomplishment.
One of the items on Leonard’s bucket list was to own a sailboat and spend the weekends sailing with his wife. In 2014, they purchased that sailboat and spent many wonderful afternoons sailing on Lake Pend Oreille. Leonard also loved to spend weekends at his home on Lake Roosevelt. There, he enjoyed the excitement of watching his grandchildren catch their first big fish, warm summer days spent at the beach, afternoons on the deck, and especially enjoyed being snowed in with his family for the holidays. Leonard truly loved his family and demonstrated that through his limitless loyalty and compassion.
Leonard is survived by his beloved wife of 48 years, Pamela Freeman Martel; daughters Tawny Martel Galligan (Mike), Kassandria Martel Rouleau (Casey), Aydriann Martel Plumb (Cliff) and son Tyson Martel (Whitney); eight grandchildren: Damien, Mia, Cole, Lane, Owen, Mason, Jace, Wylie and numerous nieces and nephews.
Leonard was preceded in death by his beloved parents: Joseph Edward Martel and Edith Bergman Martel and his brother Daniel Dennis Martel.
There will be a celebration of Leonard’s life, friendship, love and legacy. Details will be announced at a later date.
– Family of Leonard Martel