Trust ensures Marto’s legacy lives on

John Martin Community Trust's Jeff Brett, Yeppoon RSL president Bill Tahu and Oshen Holiday Apartments owners Andrea and Will Stokje. Picture: GREGOR MACTAGGART


John ‘Marto’ Martin was a beloved figure on the Capricorn Coast.

So when he died in October 2022, his friends got together and wanted to honour his memory in the best way they knew how.

They formed the John ‘Marto’ Martin Community Music Memorial Trust.

“Marto and his wife Genevieve were owners of Ferns Hideaway for more than 40 years,” good friend Jeff Brett said.

“He loved music, and always encouraged kids to show their musical talents.

“In the Ferns days, he would get young people up on the stage, local buskers, he would go and sit down with kids for an hour, toss a few coins in the hat for them and talk about their playing.

“When he passed away, a group of us got together and thought what would be a good way to honour his legacy, so we started the trust.”

Mr Brett said the trust raises funds for the Yeppoon State High School’s musical department.

“We’ve donated $5000 for 2024 and we’ve pledged another $5000 for next year,” he said.

“The money supports the musical department, assisting people who need support and helps in the purchase of instruments.”

The trust raised the funds during a bumper day of music held at the Yeppoon RSL in December 2023.

“A lot of Marto’s music equipment was donated to the RSL, and the RSL has been a great supporter of the trust,” he said.

“The day of music fundraiser was just terrific, the RSL was packed.

“I’ve got to thank all the musos who performed on the day for nothing and gave their time for a great cause, thanks to the RSL for providing the venue, all the volunteers, local businesses who provided their time and support.

“I’d also like to thank the general public that supported the day, and tell everyone that the money raised from the day goes to supporting local kids.

“The day also reminds people about Marto and what a wonderful bloke he was.”

The trust held a major prize raffle as part of their fundraising efforts, a $600 voucher from the team at Oshen Holiday Apartments.

The draw was conducted at the Yeppoon RSL on Thursday, 29 February, with Belinda Hubbard taking out the prize.