MISSOULA — Bill Martins, 51, passed away on Friday, Sept. 29, 2017, at The Village Health Care Center, in Missoula, after battling brain cancer for seven months.
William Erik Martins "Bill" was born on Aug. 27, 1966, in Fairfax, Virginia, to Patricia and David Martins. As a young man he lived with his parents and two brothers in Seattle. Bill was introduced to Christ’s love at the age of 18, was saved, and never looked back. He graduated with a bachelor's degree from Seattle Pacific University with a focus in spreading the gospel to anyone who would listen.
When Bill was 26 years old he met the love of his life, Nikki Ward, and soon after on May 20, 1995, changed her name and kept her forever. Bill was his best self as a family man. They resided in Seattle until moving back to Missoula in 2008. Bill and Nikki had three beautiful children together, and many wonderful adventures. Kyle, Drew and Ashley were always Bill’s pride and joy and his biggest adventure. He was an amazing, attentive and loving father and husband.
Bill's passion and profession was working in youth and college ministries. He worked with Youth For Christ, was a youth/college pastor in both Seattle and Missoula, and though his final working years were with the Missoula Fed Ex family, he remained in youth ministry volunteering as a youth leader with the high school group at his church. His love for the lost was evidenced in the uprooting of his family from Seattle in 2008 to plant Axis Church in Missoula, bringing him back to the state he loved. So many relationships were important and fostered by Bill throughout his life. He had a strong will and determination to live out the message to love your neighbor as yourself quite literally and with practical application. As he would always say, “I love doing life with friends.” And everyone was Bill’s friend.
Bill never wavered in his faith and trust in the goodness of the Lord or his purpose in all things. His only sadness was not sharing Jesus with more people, the greatest gift ever given to each of us freely. He will be missed by those of us who remain, may we each carry the legacy of light in honor of Bill and proclaim the name of Jesus for all to hear!
Bill is survived by his wife, Nikki Martins, children, Kyle, Drew and Ashley Martins, mother, Patricia, brothers Dave and Rob, sisters-in-law, Lorna and Jennifer, niece Amanda, and nephew Zachary.
A memorial service and celebration of life will take place at Church of the Gates 3821 Stephens Ave. S., in Missoula, MT 59801 on Saturday, Oct. 14, at 3 p.m. with reception to follow.
In lieu of flowers donations to the church will be welcomed.