Paul R. Marte, Sr.
On December 20, 2021, Paul R. Marte, Sr. died peacefully at home, exactly as he wished, on his beloved Block Island. He was 94 years old. He is survived by Sally, his wife of 61 years, their children Paul (Matthew Alland), Peter (Rochelle), and Susan (Bryan Sweet), and grandchildren Hannah and Cooper.
Paul was born in 1927 in Manchester, Conn. to Louis and Gladys (Rising) Marte. After graduating from Manchester High School in 1945, he
served in the Navy towards the end of World War II. Post-war, he attended Trinity College in Hartford and then law school at Boston University. He completed his law degree in 1954 and, after proudly passing the bar on his first attempt, started a small law firm in Manchester in 1955. He continued at that practice, growing it over the years, until his retirement in the late 1990s. Prior to retirement, he returned to school to attain his certification as a Master Gardener from University of Connecticut. After he retired, he and Sally moved full-time to their home on Block Island.
He was active in the communities where he lived. He was a member of Rotary, holding the position of president for many years. He was a Mason. He was a member of the American Legion on Block Island. He was on numerous boards over the years, both in Conn. and on Block Island. He was active in the library, the B.I. Gardeners, the Shellfish Commission, and Harbor Baptist Church on Block Island and at Center
Congregational Church in Manchester. A last honor bestowed upon him was as recipient of the Boston Post Cane award. He enjoyed the recognition, and appreciated the honor, even though it was in his final days.
Paul loved his garden, his family (most especially his wife), reading, talking, singing, church and martinis. He was quizzical and interested in a range of subjects, though gardening was always at the top of that list. He had an obsession with the number of blueberries picked annually off the bushes in his garden. Anyone helping themselves to the berries was free to do so as long as they kept a tally and reported it to him. He recorded the numbers in his little book, year in, year out. He would tell anyone interested, and even those who weren’t, the running total and how it compared to previous years’ harvests.
He was a counselor and enjoyed connecting with people. He had dozens of good friends over the years, many who have predeceased him, but some were still part of his life up until his passing. The telephone was a lifeline for him, and even in his last week he was making calls each day to people important to him. His mind remained sharp and his interest still keen.
In lieu of flowers, the family would appreciate donations made to the Block Island Rescue Squad, the B.I. Medical Center or Harbor Baptist Church. There will be a memorial service when the weather is warmer, and the flowers are in bloom. Details will be provided closer to the time.
Paul lived well, laughed often, and loved deeply. He will be missed by his family and his many friends. Godspeed, and may the gin flow freely and the blueberries be plentiful.