October 8, 1946 – March 18, 2015
Benson (Ben) Bennett Martin, Jr., VMD, of Kennett Square, PA, died March 18, 2015, at the age of 68, after a long illness.
Dr. Martin was a pioneer in sports medicine and specialist in equine surgery, working his entire 34-year veterinary career at New Bolton Center, the large animal hospital of the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine (Penn Vet).
Dr. Martin was born in Greenwich, Connecticut, on October 8, 1946, to Benson Bennett Martin and Janeth (Nancy) Martin, who preceded him in death. He graduated from Fairfield Prep, and served in the United States Navy in Vietnam. He graduated from the University of Connecticut, and in 1980, was awarded his VMD from Penn Vet. After completing an internship and a large animal surgery residency, Dr. Martin became board certified by the American College of Veterinary Surgeons.
Dr. Martin had a long and distinguished career as a faculty member at New Bolton Center, specializing in equine sports medicine and serving as the Director of the Jeffords High Speed Treadmill facility and the Equine Performance Clinic. During the majority of his career, Dr. Martin was an integral member of Penn Vet’s Admissions Committee and enthusiastically mentored many veterinary students. He retired from the faculty as an Associate Professor of Equine Sports Medicine in July of 2014.
Dr. Martin was the consummate horseman, having grown up in the horse business. He worked in Thoroughbred racing for his uncle, Hall of Fame trainer James W. Maloney, and later at Calumet Farm in Lexington, KY, as well as in the show horse world. Dr. Martin traveled throughout the world, but chose the north shore of Kauai and Hanalei Bay as his second home. With his friends and family, he explored the island and what it had to offer to its fullest, sailing to Niihau, hiking, kayaking the NaPali, making lasting local friendships, and absorbing the culture. He was a prolific reader.
Dr. Martin, the oldest of six children, was an awesome friend, a devoted son, and a big brother to all of his siblings. He had a tremendous passion for his family and friends. He is survived by his brothers, Bruce and Robert Martin, and their wives, Debi and Sue Martin; his sisters, Eve and Laurie Martin; and his sister-in-law, Maria Martin. A third sister, Anne Miserocchi, preceded him in death. Dr. Martin also leaves behind three nephews, Glenn Martin, Robert Martin, and Mark Miserocchi; a niece, Allyson Giordano; a godson, Edward van Eps; and his three best friends for life, Dr. Ginny Reef, New Bolton Center Chief of Sports Medicine and Imaging, Lolly Clarke, and Ray Poland. Ginny was his life partner and remained by his side until his last day.
On Sunday, May 31, 2015, more than 120 friends and relatives attended a Celebration of Life in honor of Dr. Martin at Penn Vet's New Bolton Center. The outpouring of love and respect for Ben was extremely moving as were the many stories shared about the way he touched the lives of so many people and creatures over his many years as a faculty member and clinician at New Bolton Center.
Ben Martin's legacy will live on at Penn Vet in countless ways. But one of the most significant tributes to Ben as a person, veterinarian, mentor, colleague, and teacher is the creation of the Ben Martin Endowed Opportunity Scholarship. This scholarship will be established by the generous contributions of those who knew and loved him. It will support veterinarian students like the ones that Ben Martin taught and mentored so generously over the past 34 years as an important member of the Penn Vet family.