Rufus Clay Martin, son of the late Henry and Callie Ashlock Martin, was born at Tyronza, Ark., on Sept. 26, 1920, and died at his home in Patton on Dec. 31, 2002, at the age of 82. Mr. Martin had spent most of his life in the Avert Community in Stoddard County. A retired farmer and Church of God minister, he was also former owner of Martin Hill Retirement Center near Avert. On March 20, 1992, he was married to Virginia Cossel. Survivors include his wife, Virginia Martin of the home near Patton; two sons, Gary and Darrell Martin, both of Essex; one daughter, Scarlett "Scottie" Justice of Conroe, Texas; three brothers, Bill Martin of Sikeston, Uton Martin of Springfield and Aaron Martin of Aquilla; one sister, Pauline Lyons of Sikeston; 12 grandchildren; and 19 great-grandchildren. Visitation will be held from 6-8 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 2, 2003, at the Chiles-Cooper Funeral Home in Bloomfield. Funeral services will be held at 2:00 p.m. Friday, Jan. 3, 2003, at the Chiles-Cooper Funeral Home in Bloomfield. Interment will follow in the Walker Cemetery near Bloomfield.