SAN DIEGO — Deacon Seodello (Sam) Martinez, a retired deacon of the Diocese of San Diego who had served as longtime director of the Stella Maris Seafarer Center, died April 15. He was 89.
Born in the Philippines on Oct. 5, 1929, he married Nellie Lim Morados in 1957. They were married for more than 60 years, served in ministry together and raised four children: Jose, Carisa, Patricia and Vincent.
Deacon Martinez, who retired from the U.S. Navy, was a computer specialist for Naval Medical Command, Southwest Region, San Diego. He was ordained to the permanent diaconate on June 21, 1991, and assigned to St. Charles Parish in Imperial Beach, where he ministered until his retirement in 2004. He served as spiritual director for the Filipino Cursillo Movement in the Diocese of San Diego from 1993-2000. In 2005, he was appointed by then Bishop Robert H. Brom to serve as director of the Stella Maris Seafarer Center, which provides outreach to the foreign crew members of the many merchant ships that dock in the Port of San Diego.
Deacon Martinez also was a Master Catechist and taught adult confirmation classes. Other assignments included service on the Post-Ordination Formation Committee, whose main focus is to provide meaningful ongoing formation opportunities for deacons. A funeral Mass was celebrated May 1 at St. Charles Parish.