Verbena Miriam Kierstead Martin ( Mim ) was born on February 4, 1938, in North Bay, Ontario, Canada. She was the daughter of Arthur George Kierstead and Mary Ida Latour. She was raised on a farm, where she learned to milk cows, ride horses, and grow crops. She was one of 11 children, eight girls, and three boys. Her father published the local newspaper, and all of the kids delivered it. When she was older, the family moved to Sturgeon Falls, Ontario.
She gave birth to two daughters in her youth, Darlene, and Ellen, and graciously allowed others to raise these daughters in a more stable environment.
She was promised in her patriarchal blessing that she would know her roots and branches. In 2008, she was able to meet these two daughters and reconnect, and she felt that was a fulfillment of the promise in her blessing.
She migrated to Utah in 1959, where she married James Morgan Martin. This marriage produced one son, Timothy Martin. She later married Lyster P. Armstrong and Lewis Detillion. She moved to Bakersfield around 1984, where she became a U.S. citizen on December 12, 1990.
She was a member of the Kern County Genealogy Society and a constant feature in the Genealogy Room at the Beale Memorial Library, where she volunteered more than 1,000 hours. She was there almost every day. Genealogy was one of her passions. Her apartment was filled with obituaries that were lovingly filed in the Beale Library. She loved to read and loved any puzzle. She was very talented at crochet and developed her own patterns. She volunteered for several years at the Bakersfield Community House. She was a big fan of plain cheeseburgers and grated French fries and the color purple.
She was introduced to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints at the age of 14 and joined the church at the age of 20. She volunteered in the church’s genealogy library and loved to attend the temple, performing ordinances for her ancestors. She remained an active member of the church and was a beloved member of the Bakersfield 5th Ward. She loved humor and always lightened our lives with her jokes and smiles. She loved having visitors to her home. She was independent and tenacious.
She died in Bakersfield on February 20, 2022, after a short illness. She was a long-time resident of Park Place Apartments, where she left many friends. She is survived by her three children, Darlene McLeod, Ellen Conrad, and Timothy Martin. She always spoke lovingly of all her children.
She also leaves behind eight grandchildren, 19 great-grandchildren, and five great-great-grandchildren. She is also survived by many nieces and nephews, who referred to her as “Aunt Mim”.
Her funeral services will be on March 10, at 1130 am at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints at 9900 White Oak Drive, Bakersfield, CA. In lieu of flowers, donations can be Kern County Genealogical Society PO Box 2214 Bakersfield ,Ca 93303 or Volunteer Center of Kern County 1311 Eye Street Bakersfield ,Ca 93301 Phone number is 661-395-9787. Arrangements provided by Kern Family Mortuary. 661-392-9010