Steven Hine St. Martin

Steven Hine St. Martin died peacefully on September 16, 2020. He was born April 25, 1927, in Minneapolis, MN, to Belle (Pond) and Edgar St. Martin. He was raised in Bloomington in the house built in 1855 by former missionaries Gideon and Agnes Pond, where he joined older brothers, Richard and Wilson. A sister, Annabelle, was added to the family, and Dad also had numerous cousins living nearby as he grew up. His parents, brothers and sister predeceased him. Dad was a life-long member of Oak Grove Presbyterian Church and he served there as a choir member, elder, deacon, and Sunday school teacher and superintendent. It was also at the church that he met Mom (Audrey Rodestrom). They were married September 17, 1948, and enjoyed one another’s company for 71 years, until she died August 14, 2019. Dad was a 1945 graduate of Bloomington High School and then attended the University of Minnesota, obtaining a Bachelor’s degree. He later completed a Master’s Degree and took additional college courses even after that. While he was in high school Dad was diagnosed with a heart condition that doctors feared would make it unlikely he would reach the age of 30. He was among the first patients to undergo open-heart surgery, performed by Dr. Varco, at the University of Minnesota Hospitals in July of 1948, which proved completely successful. He was always grateful for this intervention and often wondered what the doctors would say about his long, healthy life! Mom and Dad’s first home was the “little house,” adjacent to Audrey’s childhood home on Penn Avenue. To accommodate a growing family, they later built a new house on the adjoining lot. They lived in that house for 65 years. Dad began his career teaching high-school math in the Bloomington Schools, just at the time when Bloomington was beginning to transform itself from a farming community to a suburb. In his first years there were not enough students for a full-time math teacher, so he taught chemistry and social studies, too. He began his career at the old school building on Penn Avenue, just across the street from their house. Later he taught at Lincoln and Jefferson High Schools, a total of 37 years. He had the opportunity for an administrative position in the Bloomington Schools, but he preferred the classroom. He always enjoyed catching up with his former students, wherever he encountered them. He was a popular teacher, known for his humor and clarity. Family was important. When the youngest one started kindergarten Mom and Dad took in foster babies for Hennepin county. Over a period of several years, twelve babies and toddlers lived in the home while awaiting adoption. They adopted two boys, themselves! Dad provided the same sterling role model for them as he did for those born to them. And it was the same when the grandchildren arrived. Dad got great enjoyment from raising fruit, vegetables and flowers in his garden, which encompassed an area that today is two large lots. This was his summer activity, and he and Mom canned or froze peas, beans, corn, and tomatoes and raised apples, pumpkins, squash, cherries, and others. Children and grandchildren remember fondly the cider-pressing parties. Dad also enjoyed chess, playing it by mail for over 50 years where he was a ranked player. He was a fan of the Minneapolis Millers and Minnesota Twins, and, even though he characterized other sports as “minor” he was P. A. announcer for his high school football teams for many years. He remained close friends with former teaching colleagues and with many members of his high school class of 1945, who, until the pandemic hit, would meet monthly for lunch at the Old Country Buffet. He is survived by children Steven (Sandy), Anne (Larry) Klueh, Jill (Ron) Dubis, Paul (Cindy), Mark (Jeannie) and Jerry (Dar); grandchildren Joe, Scott (Dylan), Tim, CeCe, Andy (Bekah), Ben (Alice), Jazzy, Tabi, Autumn and McKenna. A small private service was held at Oak Grove church on 10/3/2020. It may be viewed at: Memorials may be given to Oak Grove Church or VEAP.

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To his family, especially Anne and Jill, keeping you in my thoughts and heart. Wishing you all strength and health during this hard year. Cathy Ritchie

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