Floral 16

Linda Louise (Rundle) Martin

September 11, 1938 ~ December 26, 2021 (age 83)

Obituary

Linda Louise Rundle Martin, 83, of Gardner, KS, passed away, Sunday, December 26, 2021 at Olathe Medical Center.

Linda was born September 11, 1938, in Kansas City, Kansas, the daughter of Percival James (Jack) and Louise Rundle. Linda grew up at Lake of the Forest in Bonner Springs, Kansas.

Linda graduated from Wyandotte High School in 1956. She continued her education at the University of Kansas where she was a member of the Alpha Delta Pi sorority and graduated with a BS degree in Latin American Studies in 1960. During her sophomore year, Linda was a finalist for SUA Carnival Queen and a candidate for Homecoming queen. Linda was united in marriage to John B. Martin, native of Ottawa, Kansas, on June 25, 1960, and they were together for twenty years.

After getting married, Linda used her linguistic skills as a Spanish translator administrative assistant at Folgers Coffee. However, her true passion and lifelong career began in May of 1961 when she gave birth to her first child, son, Jeff. Once her daughter, Laurie, was born two years later, she devoted herself to raising her children.

While raising her kids, Linda was an active member of the Junior League of KCK for seventeen years. During those years, she volunteered as the Cotillion Choreographer for three years and was a member of the Mime Players that performed for children in hospitals.

Linda used her excellent administrative assistant skills in the business world. She started by assisting John with launching his fine art business in 1978. Over the years, she continued to use those skills in various employment such as Waldo Astoria Theater, Speyer Realty in Westport, and for a doctor’s office. Later, she found a new passion for buying and selling antiques and eventually created a business, The Finicky Flea, which she operated for several years. After being a grandmother, she taught herself to navigate the internet to develop a baby product website named, Comfy Cozy Baby. Even though Linda followed her interests and passions to create her own employment, she always said that her favorite occupation was being “Mimi” to her four grandsons.

Linda was a giver. From organizing special birthdays and preteen slumber parties to hosting game nights and, later, cooking homemade tapioca pudding and brownies for her grandsons, she always found a way to create special moments for her family. When her grandbabies were little, Linda could be found on the floor for hours playing make-believe, building blanket forts, racing cars or singing Tura-Lura-Lural lullaby at the end of an active day.

Linda was beautiful inside and out. Many described her as having a sparkle or special light. Some said she was even “glamourous.” However, it was her down-to-earth nature and caring spirit that made such an impact on her family and friends. A giant, trusting, compassionate heart that she couldn’t help but wear on her sleeve from time to time. She had endless empathy and felt everything deeply - easily moved to tears in moments of both joy and sorrow. But it was this attribute that made her a great listener and encourager. She always knew what to say in the moment, which is one reason why her “Boys Town” - cousins and their friends, flocked to Linda’s for some fun conversation and wisdom as they headed into adulthood. Linda loved humor but couldn’t tell a joke if the fate of the world depended on it. Even her best efforts would end with the sound of crickets – which was always funnier than the joke.

 

Besides her quick wit and stellar memory, Linda was a gifted writer and poet. Typically, she would craft a humorous, heart-felt poem for milestone birthdays. It was one of many ways she showed her love. Over the years she wrote stories about her life-especially of her growing up years at Lake of the Forest. More recently, she wrote her family members’ histories to be passed on to future generations.

Music and dancing flowed through Linda. She grew up watching ‘40s and ‘50s musicals-like Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, Oklahoma, the Music Man, The King and I and her favorite, An American in Paris- all of which she was happy to perform for you anywhere, and at any given moment. She found ways to enjoy dancing and music whether it was practicing dance steps with Laurie and performing in a mother’s number in Laurie’s dance recitals or supporting Jeff in his musical performances. She would always comment, “I am a dancer; not an athlete!”

In her later years, Linda lived on a lake again, Gardner Lake, where in the summer she enjoyed the solitude of reading her morning newspaper with coffee on her deck while her feral lake cats lounged at her feet. She loved getting lost in a well-written historical novel. Also, Linda became an avid Chiefs fan over the years and loved watching her TV line-up of detective and drama shows and romantic movies.

Linda’s legacy of love and giving will continue through her children and grandchildren. And that is a life well-lived by any standard. It is comforting to know that she is with her Lord and Savior.

Linda is preceded in death by her parents. Survivors include her former husband, John, children Jeff Martin (LeeAnn) of Lenexa; Laurie Rue (Norman) of Gardner; grandchildren, Chad Martin of Olathe; Casey Martin of Olathe, Connor Martin of Lenexa, and Collin Rue of Gardner.

A memorial service for family and close friends will be determined at a later date.

The family suggests memorial contributions to Great Plains SPCA @ www.greatplainsspca.org or 5424 Antioch Drive, Merriam, KS 66202. Family and friends are encouraged to post condolences and memories on Linda’s Tribute Wall at www.amosfamily.com.

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