Earle Martin, Former Clemson Ticket Manager, Passes
Clemson, SC-Earle Eugene "Pepper" Martin passed away in the early
morning hours of Tuesday, April 23. Mr. Martin succumbed due to
complications from pneumonia. Martin served the Clemson athletic
department in various capacities between 1945-57, including Ticket
Manager from 1953-57.
Born on Feb. 6, 1928, Martin came to Clemson in 1945 from
Greenwood as a freshman and worked as a student manager with the
baseball team. In 1948 he began work as an office assistant in the
athletic department until he became ticket manager in 1953. He
worked in that capacity until 1958 when he began a 30-year career
with the United States Postal Service in Clemson. He received a
Special Achievement Award from the United States Postal Service in
Martin contracted diabetes and was forced to retire in the
late 1980s when it became necessary to have a leg amputated. He
later had his second leg amputated in 1993 and had lived in Lila
Doyle Nursing Home in Seneca since 1995.
During his career as a postal worker in Clemson, he continued
to work for the athletic department as a photographer at athletic
events. He donated thousands of pictures to the athletic department
over the years and many are still used in Clemson's media guides
"Earle Martin came to a baseball practice when I was head
coach in 1945 and said he wanted to become involved in the program,"
recalled Walter Cox, who later became Clemson University President
and served as Martin's caretaker in recent years. "He pitched in and
helped in any way he could. I remember him coordinating the ticket
demands for the 1948 Gator Bowl. That was chore because it was the
first sellout in Gator Bowl history."
"Any Clemson football, basketball or baseball player in the
1950s through the 1980s knew Pepper," said Al Adams, Clemson
assistant sports information director under Bob Bradley from 1974-78.
"He was wonderful person. He loved to take pictures and make people
happy by giving them away. From Ray Mathews to Ray Williams,
everyone loved Pepper."
"One of my first friends when I came to Clemson was Earle
Martin," said Clemson Sports Information Director Tim Bourret. "I
didn't know anyone when I got here in 1978. I've been at Clemson
ever since because I have had the good fortune to meet people like
Funeral arrangements for Mr. Martin will be announced later
in the week.