Paula McMartin

Obituary of Paula Ann McMartin

Paula Ann McMartin (74) of Silver Spring, Maryland died on August 31, 2019 of complications from dementia. She was born in Phoenix, Arizona to Howard Lewis McMartin (1908-1997) and Lela Mae (Godfrey) McMartin (1913-1994). Following a childhood spent in Everett, Washington, Denver, Colorado, and Dallas, Texas, where she completed high school in 1963, Paula attended the University of Texas in Austin. She moved with her first husband and young son to Hyattsville, Maryland in 1967 and attended the University of Maryland, graduating in 1972. With a keen aptitude for mathematics, she became a computer systems analyst and programmer. She spent her entire career at the University of Maryland, first at the College Park campus, and then at the University System Administration, where she supported the University's transition from analog to digital information systems and the development of electronic database information systems. Paula is survived by her son, Michael Leslie Carroll, his wife JoLynn, and two grandchildren, Julia and Phillip; all of whom reside in Norway. She has three nieces and one nephew from the greater Seattle area, Connie McMartin, Molly McMartin, Heather van Mill, Kenny Regis, and a fourth niece, Audrey Regal. She is predeceased by her parents, and brothers Douglas James McMartin (born sleeping, 1937) and James Keith McMartin (1938-2010). Paula successfully balanced an accomplished career while raising her son. She was a devoted mother, and was the ultimate soccer mom well before it became a celebrated lifestyle. She attended all of her son's soccer games for over 10 years, even travelling to England to see him play in his first international competition. Paula travelled widely during retirement, both in the USA and internationally. She especially loved coastal Maine, the redwood groves of the Pacific coast, and Yellowstone National Park, from which she drew deep inspiration and spiritual fulfillment. She was a skilled craftsperson, and produced numerous beautiful quilts, knitted crafts, and cross-stitch designs for family and friends that will endure for generations. She loved dogs, especially her beloved dachshunds, and provided a loving home for numerous puppy mill rescue dogs. Paula also gave back to her community by teaching English to recent immigrants from other countries and through her participation in activities such as the bell choir at the Silver Spring Presbyterian Church. Paula loved candles, owls, and butterflies. She was a wonderful cook, drawing from generational family recipes originating in Wales, England, and Germany, and absolutely delighted in celebrating Christmas with her family and friends. Although sometimes shy and initially self-conscious around strangers, she would soon open up and her laughter could fill a room. Her family and friends will always remember her kind, warm, and generous spirit. A memorial and celebration of life will take place at the Riderwood Village Chapel (3140 Gracefield Road, Silver Spring, MD 20904) on Friday October 4, 2019 at 1200. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations are encouraged to Holy Cross hospice (Montgomery County, Maryland), Hearts United for Animals (, or your local food bank.
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