Phyllis Josephine Karpinski Martin passed away peacefully in Newport on June 18, 2021. She was born on January 27, 1928 to Eva (Jankewicz) Karpinski and Stanley Karpinski in North Walpole, NH. She graduated from Bellow Falls High School in 1945, where she was a star basketball player and was named to the All State Vermont Women’s Basketball Team. Phyllis went on to the University of New Hampshire where she majored in Home Economics and Physical Education and was a three sport athlete playing field hockey, basketball, and softball. After graduation from UNH in 1949, Phyllis moved to Newport, NH where she started the Physical Education program for girls. On April 14, 1951, she married native Newporter George (Jim) Martin, a career Navy man. The couple was first stationed in Rhode Island where they lived for eleven years and where Phyllis substitute taught, refereed basketball and had five children. The family moved to a new assignment and lived in Virginia Beach where two more children were born. In 1965 when Jim retired from the Navy, Phyllis and her family returned to Newport where they lived the rest of their days together and adding one more child to the family. A proud mother of eight children, Phyllis spent her life sewing costumes and merit badges, cooking for a crowd, baking cookies and pies, gardening, and cheering on the Newport Tigers. Forever an athlete, Phyllis skied Mount Sunapee until she was 85 years old and was often the top fundraiser for the annual Crop Walk for the hungry. And of course, “Bicycle Phyl”, will be remembered by many who waved to her on her daily six mile a route well into her 80’s.
Phyllis was a world traveler taking many pilgrimages over the years to Spain, Portugal, France, England, Germany, Italy, Poland, Medjugorje, riding a camel in Israel, swimming in the Jordan River, and seeing three popes along the way. Devoted to her Roman Catholic Faith, Phyllis was an active member of St. Patrick’s parish, serving as a lector, eucharistic minister and as a member the Catholic Women’s Club. In 2001, Phyllis was awarded the prestigious Joseph D. Vaughan award for volunteerism in Sullivan County.
Phyllis had eight children, sixteen grandchildren, and two great grandchildren. She was predeceased by her husband of 49 years, Jim, in 2000, her brother, Stanley Karpinski in 2016, and her grandson Jacob Martin Maxfield in 2008. She is survived by her children, their spouses, her grandchildren, two sisters, Arline Marro, Claremont, NH, Claire Barbieri and her husband, Bruce, of Glastonbury, CT and many nieces and nephews. Surviving children and spouses are: Carole Martin and Jack Creeden, Greenwich, CT; Debora Martin and Steve Delaney, Kittery Point, ME; Judith Martin and Robert Biggert, Westborough, MA; James Martin and Stephanie Martin, Newport; Donald Martin and Susan Martin, Grantham; Mary Maxfield and Fred Maxfield, Newport; Kristin Kloza and Mark Kloza, Salem, NH, and Amy Currier and Kenneth Currier. Surviving grandchildren include: Molly and Patrick Creeden, Sam Martin-Delaney, Gillian and Emma Biggert, Shannon and Justin Martin, Daniel and Heidi Martin, Ethan Maxfield, Nicholas, Cameron, and Nathanial Kloza, Lisa and Tyler Currier, and great grandchildren, Cayden Forand and Margot Creighton.
In lieu of flowers contributions to Newport Food Pantry or The Jake Maxfield Connection.
Visitation will be held on Monday June 21, 2021 from 11am to 1pm at Newton-Bartlett Funeral Home, 42 Main St., Newport, NH with a Mass of Christian Burial at St Patrick Catholic Church in Newport at 1pm with burial to follow in St. Patrick Catholic Cemetery. A reception will follow.
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