Martha Lou Hutchens Holt

Martha Holt, 92, of Russellville, died peacefully on Thursday, February 15, 2024.

There are many ways to describe Martha Lou Holt. Her community knows her as a devout Christian, loyal church member, theologian scholar, caring nurse and passionate supporter of the Russellville Library.

Her family knows her as Martha Lou, Nanny and Mother. She was a loving mother, devoted wife, dear sister, cherished cousin, revered aunt and unparalleled Nanny.

Martha made a statement of belief, opinion, talent of service and personality over her lifetime. She was a talented leader and fierce supporter of the Isbell Methodist Church and the Russellville Library.

Martha made a home in several states throughout her life - from Winthrop Harbor and Zion, Illinois to Memphis, Tennessee, all the way back to Russellville. She loved to travel with her husband, Bill, across the country during retirement. She inspired her grandchildren’s thirst for travel by taking them all over the country in their RV and showing them what exists outside of their hometowns.

Martha leaves a distinctive legacy - all of her four grandchildren have earned doctoral level educations. She instilled in her children and grandchildren a thirst for knowledge and a heart filled with love and acceptance for others. Nanny/Mother was a voracious reader, and that trait was passed down to her daughter and grandchildren. There were known to be heated discussions by Nanny’s bookcase on which grandchild was able to get the first pick of books to read.

Martha was an inspiration to the women in her family as she was able to overcome so much in her life and did so with a witty comment and her amazing laugh. Growing up in an era where women’s education was not highly valued, Martha refused such contention as nonsense. She strongly encouraged her daughter to seek higher education and was undeniably proud of her grandchildren in their educational efforts.

Martha had a way of making each person in her life feel special, valued and secure. She was an empathetic listener and gave the best hugs. Her family, friends and community will miss her tremendously, but the legacy she leaves behind is one full of love - which is exactly what she always valued above all.

Martha was preceded in death by her husband, Billy Wayne Holt; her sister, Carrie Sue Fretwell; her brother-in-law, Gordon Lester Fretwell, Sr. and her parents, Jessie Susanna Robinson Hutchens and William Riley Odell Hutchens.

She is survived by her daughter, Martha “Anita” Holt Hutchison and husband James B. Hutchison, Sr.; her son, Byron Lee Holt; grandchildren, LT. James “J.B.” Hutchison, Jr. Esq. (Tara), Jenny Holt Teeter, Esq. (Jeremy), Jonathan Holt, MD (Linh) and Jordan A. Hutchison, DBA (Leslie) and great-grandchildren, Charlotte Elise Teeter, Owen Burke Teeter, Roman Vincent Hutchison, James Alexander Hutchison, Buchanan Daniel Hutchison and Sabina Naomi Hutchison.

Pallbearers will be Jim Hutchison, J.B. Hutchison, Jordan Hutchison, Jonathan Holt, Jeremy Teeter and Joey Fretwell. Honorary pallbearers are Joe Leech, J.D. Robinson, Charles Hipps, Jerry Holt, Randy Holt and Dan Brown.

Visitation will be at Pinkard Funeral Home in Russellville from 11:30 a.m. -1 p.m. on Wednesday, February 21, 2024, with her funeral to immediately follow at 1 p.m.  Interment will be at Franklin Memory Gardens.

See complete story in the Northwest Alabamian.
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