Katherine Martin, 80

Freelance writer

December 29, 2007

Katherine "Kem" Martin, a retired freelance writer and public relations worker, died of lung cancer complications Sunday at Union Memorial Hospital. The Pikesville resident was 80.

Born Katherine Metzger in Atlanta and raised in Selma, Ala., she studied journalism at the University of Alabama at Tuscaloosa and was a reporter for the Decatur Daily.

She moved to New Orleans and was publicity director of International House, a trade organization. She promoted the port.

After moving to Baltimore in 1971, Mrs. Martin became public relations director of the Printing Industries of Maryland.

She did freelance writing for the Maryland Business Journal, Mid-Atlantic Business Journal, Maryland Woman, the Northwest Star, Print and Graphics and newsletters.

She ran her own company, Kem Martin Public Relations, from her home. She wrote an annual report for the city of Baltimore.

"She was a fiercely independent woman and complained of nothing her whole life," said her son, Jay A. Martin of San Francisco.

In her later years, Mrs. Martin earned the status of a duplicate bridge Life Master. She was a member of the Bridge Club of Baltimore.

Mrs. Martin was the immediate past president of the Williamsburg Neighborhood Association in Baltimore County.

Plans for a memorial service are incomplete.

In addition to her son, survivors include a daughter, Karen M. Barch of Chicago; a brother, Sidney Metzger Jr. of Pittsburgh; a sister, Claire Jacobs of Clayton, Mo.; and two grandchildren. Her 1951 marriage to Jack Martin ended in divorce.

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