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Martha Sue Collins Thomas, Ramsey, IN (d. Jan. 18, 2014)

She was a member of a highly distinguished Adair County, KY family, the daughter of the late Dorothy and Luther Collins, and older sister of Brenda Collins Williams, Columbia, KY and Kay Collins Embrey of Brandenburg, KY. She attended public schools in Adair County, graduating in three years, in 1957 - one year ahead of her class - and attended Lindsey Wilson College at age 16. She was a pioneer of independence, loved to travel, and was very active in the Kentuckiana and National Herb Societies. She was a graduate of Western Kentucky University and attended Northwestern University for graduate studies. She had a 30 year career as a Medical Technologist at Floyd Memorial Hospital. She was a leader from her early days in Columbia, where she was class president of her freshman Adair County High School class, and in her adopted home in Harrison County, Indiana, where she was a local celebrity, hosting teas, seminars, symposiums, and talks, always spreading her love for nature to a younger generation. She was an inspiration to all she met.

Martha Sue Collins Thomas died peacefully at her home in Harrison County, IN, Saturday, January 18, 2014 after a brief struggle with cancer. She was surrounded by her sons, Todd, Brian, Scott, Richard and Jeffrey. Martha Sue (Marty) was the oldest daughter of the late Luther and Dorothy Collins of Adair County, Kentucky.

A memorial visitation will be held in the fellowship hall at Unity Chapel United Methodist Church, 1760 Lost Creek Road NW, Ramsey, IN, on Sunday, January 26, 2014, between 1pm-4pmCT/2pm-5pmET, for all family & friends. A celebration of her life for family and close friends will be held at a later date.

Marty enjoyed a full life of friends and family. She attended Lindsey Wilson College at the age of 16. She secured a bachelor of science degree from Western Kentucky University during a time when women's liberation was just getting started. Marty also attended graduate school at Northwestern University.

She was a pioneer of independence, strength, and confidence and served as a role model for her daughters-in-law, Delaine, Trina, Hannah, and Carla. She traveled the United States and the world, visiting various countries until just a few months prior to her diagnosis with cancer. She was employed by Floyd Memorial Hospital for over 30 years as a Medical Technologist.

In addition to raising five sons and working full time, she also was a long-time member of the Kentuckiana Herb Society and the National Herb Society, achieving the Rosemary Circle Award, honoring those who have served for 25 years or more. Marty was instrumental in the Kentuckiana Unit, serving as the first President, Vice President, Secretary and Historian over the years. Her dedication to this knowledge and learning inspired herb gardens to be placed in both Indiana and Kentucky, at Floyd Memorial Hospital, The Kentucky School for the Blind, Falls of the Ohio, and the Pioneer Garden at Frank O'Bannon Park. She was a local celebrity, hosting teas, seminars, symposiums, and talks, always spreading her love for nature to a younger generation.

Marty was a long-time member of Unity Chapel United Methodist Church in Ramsey, Indiana and served on countless committees there, including the United Methodist Women's Group. She was also a docent at the Kentucky Center of the Arts for several years, always celebrating the arts and culture and spreading her love of the arts to others.

Besides her sons and daughters-in-law, she is survived by the following:
  • Two sisters: Brenda Collins Williams of Adair County, Kentucky, and Kay Collins Embrey of Brandenburg, Kentucky

  • Thirteen grandchildren: Shelby, Zach, Josh, Hannah, Hope, Rebekah, Myranda, Makayla, Rhys, Gordon, Nate, Courtland and Carlan Thomas

  • Two great-grandchildren: Christian and Emmett.
In lieu of flowers, Marty requested that memorial donations be made to the United Methodist Women's Group, c/o Unity Chapel United Methodist Church, 1760 Lost Creek Road, Ramsey, Indiana, 47166.

Swarens Funeral Home, 1405 Hwy 64 NW, Ramsey, Indiana is in charge of the arrangements.

This story was posted on 2014-01-20 13:51:52
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Grissom-Martin Funeral Home
Located one block off the Square at 200 Campbellsville Street in Columbia, KY.
To reach David and Cathy Martin, phone (270)-384-2149, or e-mail:
Large enough to serve comfortably; Small enough to serve personally.

G & G Monuments
Todd and Mandi Green and Jared Conover
1670 Liberty Road, Columbia, KY. email:, 270-634-0359
First Quality Marble and Granite

Stotts-Phelps-McQueary Funeral Home
Established 1922 | 210 Greensburg St., Columbia, KY 42728 | Jeff Jessie, Owner
270-384-2145,, email

Martha Sue Collins Thomas, Adair Co., KY (d. Jan. 18, 2014)

2014-01-20 - Ramsey, IN - Photo From Swarens Funeral Home.

Martha Sue Collins Thomas, Adair Co., KY (d. Jan. 18, 2014)

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