Mike Martin with his books at Hope Welty Public Library in Cerro Gordo.
By CHRISTY JANKOWSKI
Former Middle School Teacher and Coach from Cerro Gordo with 43 years of service, Michael Martin, has now published and donated three books to the Hope Welty Public Library in Cerro Gordo.
Martin has served as a village trustee on the village board for a number of years, and still occasionally subs in the district.
His most recent published book is “I Had a Ball Coaching.” This book is a combination of an autobiography and explains why Martin became a coach and teacher.
When asked why write a book he stated, “I had a lot of fun with this.” Adding, “I’m a night owl, so a lot of times would work until 2 or 3 o’clock in the morning.”
The book is forwarded by Don Pipher and Dave Dobson, two people Martin admires and both led him down the path of education. The book details his coaching philosophy, stats, and recognition of referees, fans, administration, management and more. Martin states, “lucky to have so many talented players through the twenty-nine years coaching.” Adding, “I had an advantage being a junior high coach. I had them in the classroom, had them in P.E.”
His teaching career began with Mackinaw Jr. High and then he went on to teach for 28 years at Cerro Gordo. Martin coached and managed several slow pitch softball, fastpitch, football, and high school basketball. During his final year of coaching he coached Jr. High girls basketball, “the girls played hard and I enjoyed their courage to learn basketball.”
Martin added sometimes coaching comes with a season without a lot of wins. “Hold up your chin up high, because it’s going to happen. Some years it’s hard and you’re not going to get a winning season.”
Martin still currently subs for the Cerro Gordo district, and enjoys it. He has spent the past 45 years teaching in some way or another even after retirement.
The other two books Martin has authored are: The History of Cerro Gordo and Oakley Men’s Fastpitch Softball, and The Martin/Kroop Heritage which is a family history book. He has also authored two short stories for family members titled, “The Ryder Gang” and “Growing Up as a Martin.” Both of those stories are only for family members. However if you would like to purchase his recent book “I Had A Ball Coaching” you may do so by calling 217-855-0464, or find him around the village and he states he will get you a copy.