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Colonel Leonard Wayne "Marty" Martinec, MD Obituary

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Colonel Leonard Wayne "Marty" Martinec, MD

Huntsville, Alabama

July 15, 1937 - June 8, 2024

Colonel Leonard Wayne "Marty" Martinec, MD Obituary

Leonard Wayne Martinec was born and raised in the Czech neighborhood of Chicago, Illinois where he and his family lived behind J. Martinec & Sons hardware store. He graduated high school from Morgan Park Military Academy in Chicago in 1955. After one year at The Citadel in Charleston, SC, he transferred to the University of Mississippi. There in Oxford, he met the love of his life, Sara Geneva Roy. Marty and Sara were married on January 29, 1957 (although there was much debate through the years about the correct anniversary because the clerk at the courthouse didn't sign the marriage license until January 30!). He graduated first in his class from the University of Mississippi School of Pharmacy in 1960, and then he worked as a pharmacist at Nolen Drugs in Jackson while attending the University of Mississippi School of Medicine, graduating in 1964. After medical school graduation, he completed a one-year internship at the University of Tennessee Baptist Memorial Hospital in Memphis in June 1965. When he was drafted by the U.S. Army, the family moved from Memphis to Redstone Arsenal, where they lived until he was deployed to Vietnam.


From July 1966 to January 1967, he served as a battalion surgeon with the 4th Battalion, 21st Infantry, 196th Light Infantry Brigade in Tay Ninh. One night, this unit (which was nicknamed "the Polar Bears") was pinned down under heavy mortar fire. At great risk to his own life, he moved from one wounded man to the next, treating their injuries, all while under continued artillery bombardment. For this heroic action, he was awarded the Combat Medical Badge. When the unit was not in action, Captain Martinec led medical teams into the surrounding villages to offer medical care to the local population. From January 1967 until July 1967, he served as a surgeon with the 67th Evacuation Hospital in Qui Nohn, often operating throughout the night to save the lives of countless wounded American soldiers and pilots.


In 1967 he returned from Vietnam and was relieved from active duty. He returned to Huntsville and entered family practice with Dr. Grady Baker. Dr. Martinec was the epitome of the "general practitioner". His practice included general surgery, primary care, and even obstetrics; in fact, there are many families in Huntsville for whom Dr. Martinec delivered babies across multiple generations. Besides caring for the medical and surgical patients that came to his office, he also worked in the Huntsville Hospital Emergency Department for 20 years until 1987. He was board certified in Family Practice and was also a Fellow in the American Academy of Family Practice. He was the chairman of the Huntsville Hospital Emergency Department Committee, a trustee at Humana Hospital, on the faculty at the UAH School of Primary Care, and a member of the Alabama Board of Medical Examiners.


He and his family joined the First Baptist Church in Huntsville in 1967; he was a lay preacher, deacon, and Sunday school teacher, and he also played the saxophone in the First Baptist Church orchestra. He served for 35 years as a Battalion Surgeon in the US Army Reserves, retiring as a colonel in 2002. He continued to practice medicine until he retired in 2016 at the age of 78. He loved to study history and the Bible, and he was an avid fan of the Ole Miss Rebels and the Chicago Cubs.


He passed away peacefully on June 8, 2024, surrounded by his family, wearing an Ole Miss t-shirt and lying under an Ole Miss blanket.


Dr. Martinec is preceded in death by his parents, George Henry Martinec and Anna Margaret Langer Martinec, his brothers George Henry Martinec, Jr. and Ronald Joseph Martinec, and his grandson, Sergeant Paul Brent Bergmann, USMC.


He is survived by his wife of 67 years, Sara Roy Martinec; his three daughters, Jamie Martinec Bergmann, Linda Marie Clift, and Dr. Amy Martinec Billings; two sons-in-law, Paul Bergmann III and Dr. Charles Julian Billings Sr.; five grandchildren, Joshua Tyler Amsden, Kelly Lauren Bergmann, Patrick Grant Billings (Katie), Jackson Park Billings, and Charles Julian Billings, Jr; and six great-grandchildren, Levi Belle Billings, John Thatcher Billings, Piper Jane Billings, Isaiah Amsden, Avery Amsden, and Kennedy Amsden.


Visitation will be held at Laughlin Funeral Home on Thursday June 13 from 5:00-7:00 pm. A Celebration of Life Service will be at First Baptist Church of Huntsville Chapel on Friday June 14 at 11:00 am. Dr. Martinec will lie in state in the First Baptist Church Chapel one hour prior to the celebration service. He will be interred with full military honors at 11 a.m. EST on Monday, June 24, 2024, at Chattanooga National Cemetery. 


In lieu of flowers, donations in Dr. Martinec's memory may be made to First Baptist Church Missions Ministry, Still Serving Veterans, or to the Ole Miss Loyalty Foundation.




To share a memory or send a condolence gift, please visit the Official Obituary of Colonel Leonard Wayne "Marty" Martinec, MD hosted by Laughlin Service Funeral Home.

Leonard Wayne Martinec was born and raised in the Czech neighborhood of Chicago, Illinois where he and his family lived behind J. Martinec & Sons hardware store. He graduated high school from Morgan Park Military Academy in Chicago in 1955. After one year at The Citadel in Charleston, SC, he transferred to the University of Mississippi. There in Oxford, he met the love of his life, Sara Geneva Roy. Marty and Sara were married on January 29, 1957 (although there was much debate through the years about the correct anniversary because the clerk at the courthouse didn't sign the marriage license until January 30!). He graduated first in his class from the University of Mississippi School of Pharmacy in 1960, and then he worked as a pharmacist at Nolen Drugs in Jackson while attending the University of Mississippi School of Medicine, graduating in 1964. After medical school graduation, he completed a one-year internship at the University of Tennessee Baptist Memorial Hospital in Memphis in June 1965. When he was drafted by the U.S. Army, the family moved from Memphis to Redstone Arsenal, where they lived until he was deployed to Vietnam.


From July 1966 to January 1967, he served as a battalion surgeon with the 4th Battalion, 21st Infantry, 196th Light Infantry Brigade in Tay Ninh. One night, this unit (which was nicknamed "the Polar Bears") was pinned down under heavy mortar fire. At great risk to his own life, he moved from one wounded man to the next, treating their injuries, all while under continued artillery bombardment. For this heroic action, he was awarded the Combat Medical Badge. When the unit was not in action, Captain Martinec led medical teams into the surrounding villages to offer medical care to the local population. From January 1967 until July 1967, he served as a surgeon with the 67th Evacuation Hospital in Qui Nohn, often operating throughout the night to save the lives of countless wounded American soldiers and pilots.


In 1967 he returned from Vietnam and was relieved from active duty. He returned to Huntsville and entered family practice with Dr. Grady Baker. Dr. Martinec was the epitome of the "general practitioner". His practice included general surgery, primary care, and even obstetrics; in fact, there are many families in Huntsville for whom Dr. Martinec delivered babies across multiple generations. Besides caring for the medical and surgical patients that came to his office, he also worked in the Huntsville Hospital Emergency Department for 20 years until 1987. He was board certified in Family Practice and was also a Fellow in the American Academy of Family Practice. He was the chairman of the Huntsville Hospital Emergency Department Committee, a trustee at Humana Hospital, on the faculty at the UAH School of Primary Care, and a member of the Alabama Board of Medical Examiners.


He and his family joined the First Baptist Church in Huntsville in 1967; he was a lay preacher, deacon, and Sunday school teacher, and he also played the saxophone in the First Baptist Church orchestra. He served for 35 years as a Battalion Surgeon in the US Army Reserves, retiring as a colonel in 2002. He continued to practice medicine until he retired in 2016 at the age of 78. He loved to study history and the Bible, and he was an avid fan of the Ole Miss Rebels and the Chicago Cubs.


He passed away peacefully on June 8, 2024, surrounded by his family, wearing an Ole Miss t-shirt and lying under an Ole Miss blanket.


Dr. Martinec is preceded in death by his parents, George Henry Martinec and Anna Margaret Langer Martinec, his brothers George Henry Martinec, Jr. and Ronald Joseph Martinec, and his grandson, Sergeant Paul Brent Bergmann, USMC.


He is survived by his wife of 67 years, Sara Roy Martinec; his three daughters, Jamie Martinec Bergmann, Linda Marie Clift, and Dr. Amy Martinec Billings; two sons-in-law, Paul Bergmann III and Dr. Charles Julian Billings Sr.; five grandchildren, Joshua Tyler Amsden, Kelly Lauren Bergmann, Patrick Grant Billings (Katie), Jackson Park Billings, and Charles Julian Billings, Jr; and six great-grandchildren, Levi Belle Billings, John Thatcher Billings, Piper Jane Billings, Isaiah Amsden, Avery Amsden, and Kennedy Amsden.


Visitation will be held at Laughlin Funeral Home on Thursday June 13 from 5:00-7:00 pm. A Celebration of Life Service will be at First Baptist Church of Huntsville Chapel on Friday June 14 at 11:00 am. Dr. Martinec will lie in state in the First Baptist Church Chapel one hour prior to the celebration service. He will be interred with full military honors at 11 a.m. EST on Monday, June 24, 2024, at Chattanooga National Cemetery. 


In lieu of flowers, donations in Dr. Martinec's memory may be made to First Baptist Church Missions Ministry, Still Serving Veterans, or to the Ole Miss Loyalty Foundation.




To share a memory or send a condolence gift, please visit the Official Obituary of Colonel Leonard Wayne "Marty" Martinec, MD hosted by Laughlin Service Funeral Home.

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